29 July 2016

‘It’s impossible’ Editor condemns one- language policy for schools

SchoolThe Finder editor has criticized the initiators of the language policy calling for a uniform local language code to be used to teach in public basic public schools.

Elvis Darko explained that it would be so burdensome because most pupils will possibly have to learn three languages.

They would first have to learn their own dialect, the supposed language if it’s not their dialect and the English language which is the country’s official language.

There are at least 40 languages and dialects in Ghana and picking just one as the medium of learning or instruction in schools might be costly and impossible, Mr Darko said.

A press release issued at the end of a conference organised by Ghana Institute of Linguistics, Literacy and Bible Translation (GILLBT) urged all stakeholders including GES, Ministry of Education, University of Education to do everything possible to enhance the learning of local languages.

The communiqué again encouraged the involvement of Community Service Officers (CSO’s), Non-Formal Education Divisions, Chiefs, parents and many others to support the use of local languages as “it is a necessity and not a choice”.

However, he disagrees with the press release and urged GES to reconsider the language policy as it will drastically affect the quality of written and spoken English in Ghana.

Hence he advised that English should be used as a medium of instruction from even the kindergarten.

He explained further that it will be so wrong to have any dialect as the first taught language in public basic schools.

He added that most pupils in public schools struggle to speak and understand the English language.

The pupils are therefore not perspicacious enough in the use of the English language as the medium of instruction.

He noted that “if those who were introduced to the English language much earlier in life cannot speak and write so well, how does anyone expect those who get a late introduction to do better?”

Source: Myjoyonline.com

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