Should mother tongue be the medium of instruction in schools?

Should Hindi be the National language of India

Theme:

  • According to the ‘National Education Policy’ 2020, which was launched in July 2020, the mother tongue or local/regional is to be the medium of instruction for students till class 5. Compulsory education in mother tongue sparked debates throughout the country.

In Favor:

  • Language represents the culture and lifestyle of society. Education is to prepare for life in society. Learning about our culture and other subjects in a foreign language can lead to confusion and lack of clarity.
  • The biggest loophole in our education system the rote learning,  i.e. byhearting the subjects. Having English as the medium of instruction will worsen the situation.
  • There are many English medium schools in India. But most of their teachers have no skills to teach in English, risking the children’s studies.
  • A survey by Oxford University revealed that children, who have their mother tongue as medium of instruction outperform the children, who have a foreign language as the medium of instruction.
  • Having good command over one language helps a lot in learning other languages. But the children that are having another language as the medium of instruction aren’t getting command either on their mother tongue or on their medium of instruction.

Against:

  • Switching the medium of instruction in the middle of the school or later may put stress on students.
  • As the world is increasingly globalized, children should be taught in the international language, i.e. English. So that they can grab more opportunities.
  • English is an official language of India. And most Indians can speak English. So, it’s not a totally new language to us.

Facts:

  • The trend of English medium as the medium of instruction is increasing continuously not just in India but in many other countries.
  • This phenomenon is mostly in private schools than in public schools.
  • In India, parents are enrolling their children in English medium schools to provide them with a better future and also because of the prestige associated with English.

The situation in other countries:

  • China, Japan, Germany and many other countries are doing very well without English education.
  • ‘Philippines’ revised its education system and started to implement the mother tongue as the medium of instruction. And the result is the drastic increase in enrollments in rural areas.
  • ‘Guatemala’ witnessed decreased dropouts and increased literacy rates, when it implemented the mother tongue as the medium of instruction. This step reduced their education expenditure.
  • ‘Mali’ did the same and witnessed increased creativity and innovative skills in children.

Conclusion:

To learn English, it’s not required to learn all the subjects through English. To get a good grip on the subjects and their mother tongue, children should be taught in their mother tongue at least in the primary school level. But the option should be voluntary.

Your Turn…

Do you think the mother tongue should be the medium of teaching in schools? Express your opinion in the comment section below.


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8 comments

  1. I think mother tongue is a language people can learn at their homes and their environment, but if it’s made mandatory at schools, the problem arises when immigrants from other states join the schools someplace far away, which leads to communication gaps which in turn makes them feel alienated towards the rest of the class, therefore, I firmly believe that the medium of instruction should be English. besides that, having a common language which doesn’t favor any ethenic group makes everyone learn it with the same difficulty hence integrating them and lessening their differences

  2. According to we everybody gives the respect to our mother tongue and every children should learn mother tongue but in English is an international language , we are living in the era of globalization so we have to learn English for our higher study and communication. My Mother tongue is bengali but if I go to abroad nobody will understand bengali so I will be in trouble but English is the language anywhere I can communicate . For corporate sector if I want to join I have to conversant in English without I will not get the job. In higher study also I will not be able to do in our mother tongue. If children from their beginning they will not learn English then future they will be in trouble . We should learn mother tongue and give respect but we must have to learn English.

    1. Very true Tinku! English is the language that connects all the Indians. The English language is essential to improve our opportunities.

  3. yes…mother tongue should be the language for education….as a child understand far more better then the child studying in english mediums!!and thats scientifically proven…..and leads to many great development..

  4. Definitely, education must be in vernacular language for better understanding. Expressing our feelings & emotions freely are more comfortable in our own mother tongue.
    Farah Diba

  5. sure.. medium of instruction should be mother tongue of the child. development of a region should be make through the regional language,,,

    1. formal education must be a continuation of informal things which the child understand from the family and its environment. A child can express his/her views and concepts through the regional language.

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