Saturday 22 Jun 2024

Foreign languages, Hindi get raw deal under new edu policy, sparks concerns

THE GOAN NETWORK | MAY 30, 2024, 01:03 AM IST

The blueprint devised by the State Council for Education, Research and Training (SCERT) for implementation of National Education Policy (NEP) which the State government has already announced will happen in Class IX this year has tweaked the three language formula, which many academicians and school faculty members feel will eliminate foreign languages from the school system and make it possible for students to also drop Hindi.

While retaining the three-language formula for high school (Class IX to XII), only the first language (R1) will be compulsorily English. For Second Language (R2), students will have a choice to pick any one from Hindi, Konkani or Marathi, says the document released earlier this month by SCERT.

Also for third language (R3), students will be permitted to pick from Hindi, Konkani and Marathi, if not pitched for R2, or from any native Indian language currently offered by the Goa Board of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education.

“Technically therefore, the scheme allows students to drop Hindi entirely from their 10 curricular subjects, if they pick either Konkani or Marathi as their second language (R2) and one of these or any other Indian language listed among those offered by the Goa Board as their third language (R3) choice, possibly Sanskrit,” a principal of a leading Panaji school told The Goan.

Another feature of the SCERT’s scheme related to languages is the elimination of foreign languages from the choices for third language (R3).

Although this year relaxation is being granted for any language offered by Goa Board, including foreign languages like French, Portuguese, German and Arabic, this relaxation is meant to accommodate those students who opted for any one of these foreign languages last year in their Class VIII.

In Goa, opting for French or Portuguese for the third language curricular subject has been a common feature among students of classes VIII, IX and X. And, this change – of eliminating foreign languages from the High School Stage (classes IX to XII) has left academicians, teachers and several functionaries of school managements confused and restive.

In fact some school managements have already decided to drop the option of foreign languages (mostly Portuguese and French) for their students in Class VIII this year itself, since they will not have the option when promoted to Class IX under the NEP.

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