Laws Stress Mother Tongue as Medium of Instruction

The National Curriculum Framework [NFC] of 2005, Right to Education [RTE] Act, 2009, and National Education Policy [NEP], 2020 stressed on rendering school education in mother tongue or home language. The Center told the Supreme Court recently about the new policy. The Union Ministry of Education made this statement in response to a notice issued by the apex court on an appeal registered by the AP Government.

Laws Stress Mother Tongue as Medium of Instruction
Laws Stress Mother Tongue as Medium of Instruction

The Government has questioned the order of the state High Court setting aside its decision on making English medium obligatory for 1st to 6th classes in government schools starting from the academic session 2020-21. The center informed the top court that the Section 29 [2][f] of the RTE Act states that ‘medium of instruction shall, as far as possible, be in child’s mother tongue.’ The NCF said in an affidavit that ‘home language(s) of children…should be the medium of instruction in schools.’

The affidavit further stated that the RTE Act also includes this extract from NCF. The statement reads, ‘NEP 2005 defines home language or mother tongue as languages subsuming the languages of home, larger kinship groups, street and neighborhood that a child acquires naturally from his/her home and societal environment. If a school does not have provisions for teaching in the child home language(s) at the higher levels, the primary school curriculum must still be covered through the home language(s)…’

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