12.05.2011 - UNESCO Office in Kathmandu

UNESCO commissions study on multilingual education in Nepal

©UNESCO/Krishna Malla -Females in an adult literacy class in Rupandehi district of Nepal learning in their mother tongue

Mother tongue instruction and bilingual or multilingual education are crucial to providing a quality education and enhancing the learning of children from diverse language backgrounds.

This is especially significant in a multilingual country such as Nepal which has a varied linguistic heritage of an estimated 120 languages .

UNESCO has therefore commissioned an intensive review of how multilingual education is practiced in schools in the country.

The study will review the government’s commitment towards multilingual education, analyze the current practices and impacts on children’s performance, and evaluate the attitudes of education authorities and parents towards multilingual education.

The expected outcome is to promote multilingual education and build the capacity of policy makers and practitioners towards its integration in programmes and practices in Nepal’s education sector.

Tap Raj Pant of the UNESCO Office in Kathmandu said: “Quality education for all cannot be achieved when education is packaged in a language that some learners neither speak nor understand.

“The study will help to reach the goal of implementing multilingual education in 7,500 schools, as the School Sector Reform Plan foresees.”

The study is being carried out by the Department of English Language, Tribhuvan University’s Faculty of Education, with the participation of government education department officials.

 

 




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