Only few schools imparting education in mother tongue

  • So far, only 69 mother tongues have been used as the medium of instruction

Bhaktapur, January 24

Though the constitution of Nepal allows schools to impart primary education in mother tongues, very few schools across the country are doing so.

At a time when educationalists are  advocating for the use of mother tongue as the language of instruction at the primary level for enhancing learning abilities of young leaders and proper development of their social, emotional and life skills, it is time for schools that use English or Nepali to rethink.

There are a total of 123 different languages spoken in the country as per the census of 2011,  but only 69 mother tongues have been used as the medium of instruction at schools.

According to Deputy Director of Multilingual Education Section at Department of Education, Narayan Prasad Subedi, mother tongue  can be used to impart education at the primary level, it should not only be taken as an optional language subject.

A research conducted by Department of Education in 2014 shows that as many as 600,000 students in the country are getting education in their own mother tongues and there are a total of 35,000 schools which are imparting primary education in the language widely spoken in their locality.

“It is not mandatory for schools to develop textbooks in mother tongue, they can use the language as a medium of instruction,” said Subedi, adding that Curriculum Development Centre has published textbooks for as many as 24 different languages so far.

“Schools are given the authority to develop textbooks in their own mother tongue,” he said.