87.6 lakh books in local languages dispatched in Assam promoting Multilingual Education
It is always good when things move from talking to action: In Assam new textbooks have been developed and distributed for the early grades that are in line with the New Education Policy. It is good to note that they have been produced in several local languages. Still it would be interesting to learn why certain languages are included while others are not.
According to the ANI Report, the Education Minister of Assam last week officially dispatched vehicles with 87.6 lakh textbooks in local languages of Assam. The languages included are Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Manipuri, Garo, Hmar, and English for Classes 1 to 3. This initiative comes under the NIPUN Assam Mission for the Foundational Literacy and Numeracy (FLN) programme from the NEP or New Education Policy with special emphasis on teaching children in their mother tongue so as to promote Multilingual Education. NIPUN is a flagship scheme under National Education Policy 2020 which seeks to achieve the foundational literacy and numeracy of students in the 3-to-9-year age group in their mother tongue by 2026‒2027. NGOs such as the Language and Learning Foundation have been involved in the design.
Last year, we also wrote in this blog post about initiatives announced to include four local languages (Rabha, Missing, Tiwa, Dewri) in Assam as a medium of instruction as a part of promoting the use of the mother tongue under NEP 2020. However, these languages do not seem to be included in this latest initiative.
We look forward to more state-level efforts and initiatives to promote Multilingual Education at the ground level in the next five to ten years.
Karsten, in collaboration with Upasana Lepcha