At least five newspapers reported on the findings of a recent UNICEF sociolinguistic survey in Jharkhand. The study revealed quite interesting findings with regards to the gap between home language and school language. A few quotes:
Thank you, Binay Pattanayak, for spearheading this great research initiative!The research was carried out in 72 blocks across the 24 districts of the state, covering 216 villages. During the survey, researchers interacted with schoolchildren, their parents, teachers and village leaders. Over 3,000 kids were profiled during the survey.
It was found that mother tongue of over 96 per cent of rural population, including school kids, was tribal or regional languages. While 33 per cent of the children interviewed spoke Santhali at home, 17.5 per cent spoke Khortha, 9.5 per cent Kurukh, 8.2 per cent Nagpuri, 7.6 per cent used Mundari, 6.7 per cent Sadri and 5.6 per cent used Ho. Only four per cent rural families spoke Hindi at home.
92 per cent of the teachers use Hindi to interact with students in schools. Over 90 per cent of the teachers indicated that they can speak tribal or regional language of that area. But since instruction in mother tongue is not mandatory they chose to instruct in Hindi.
Over 78% of the teachers felt that children faced problems in learning because of the language gap of home and school.
The study recommends that the medium of instruction in anganwadi pre-school centres and primary classes in schools should be in the mother-tongue of children, which is tribal or regional language. The study suggests that material in tribal and regional language should be developed and used in classrooms to bridge gap between the home language and school language. Besides, teachers should be oriented to understand and respect local resources and culture, as well as to communicate with children in local language.
- The Telegraph - Basic education fails language test - 96% primary kids fail to follow classes in Hindi medium
- Pioneer - ONLY 4 PER CENT RURAL PEOPLE IN STATE SPEAK HINDI AT HOME!
- Teaching children in Mother Tongue will decrease dropout rate in schools
- BeyondHeadlines - Only 4% of Rural Population in Jharkhand Speaks Hindi at Home => Hindi Version
- Study Reveals Only 4% Of State’s Tribes Speak Hindi
- Unicef to Deal with Linguistic Diversity
PS With apologies that this is send out a week later than planned.
Karsten van Riezen
Education Consultant, LinkedIn Profile
SIL International, South Asia Group
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