Dear MLE Friends,
The World Bank's new education strategy was published earlier this week. For the first time it includes a statement on the language of instruction. In the section on children between the ages of 6 and 8 it states: "Children in these age groups benefit from the instructional use of their mother tongue, combined with instruction in the dominant language.".
The phrasing seems a bit weak is it leaves space for early exit strategies (meaning a quick transition to the language of wider communication). A study like the one from Kathleen Heugh "Optimizing Learning and Education in Africa – the Language Factor" suggests that only programmes that spend several years in the mother tongue book the success needed.