Photo by Jaikishan Patel from Unsplash Last week the Indian government cleared a new National Education Policy (NEP). An NEP sets the framework for education for approximately the next 10 years. It is therefore worth looking at it from a language perspective. The policy gives a push for multilingualism and at first glance it seems that the pedagogical principle of children being taught in their mother tongue is kept up. However a closer look reveals that it is more complex than that.
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Dear multilingual education friends, Using the mother tongue in the anganwadis or preschools is not only done in Orissa, but also in Malaysia. Dr Karla Smith wrote a book on it titled " Heritage Language Playschools for Indigenous Minorities ". The MTB-MLE website reports: This book contains administrative and curriculum materials that can be used to establish and operate playschool programmes for indigenous communities. Carefully sequenced steps, covering pre-planning to evaluation, outline the process of setting up a local playschool with the aid of community involvement. The content covers pre-reading, pre-writing and readiness skills and provides an abundance of practical advice, forms and ideas based on sound educational theory.