Sahitya Parishat holds interaction with writers on language policy

While a few thinkers favoured Kannada as a medium of instruction from class 1 to 10, a majority of the speakers supported the State Government's policy of introducing English from class 6 at a discussion here on Thursday.

These views were expressed during a meeting organised by the Dakshina Kannada Sahitya Parishat to collect opinion about the language policy of the State Government.

Initiating the discussion, Sahitya Parishat district unit president Pradeep Kumar Kalkura asked people to give their opinion about the language policy of the State Government and the Centre. People could submit their opinion as to whether there was a need to introduce both English and Kannada languages for class 1. He sought their feedback about the move of the State Government to introduce English from class 6.

The zilla sahitya parishat would be compiling the opinion and submit the same to the State and the Union governments, he said.

Writer Aerya Lakshminaraya Alva said it was necessary to teach children in primary and secondary schools in Kannada, which was the language many followed. This would help in not only mastering Kannada but also aid the child in clearly understanding subjects. English could be the medium of instruction from class 11 when children would have developed the ability to understand issues and concepts in English, he said.

Chandrakala Nandavara, who has been in the teaching field for nearly four decades, said it was important for parents to instil in their children the joy of learning. “This is the basic need. This is what my husband and I did for my two children, who studied in Kannada medium in primary school. They did not have any inferiority complex while continuing their education in English medium later,” she said.

While favouring introduction of English from class 6, Ms. Nandavara expressed her displeasure over the poor state of Kannada schools in Dakshina Kannada. She said Government allowed English-medium instruction between classes 1 and 4 in many private schools in the district that led to closure of many Kannada-medium schools. She said Ganapathy High School, where she taught for a long time, was suffering as the management had continued to teach in Kannada medium.

The former Chairman of Karnataka Yakshagana Byalata Academy Kumble Sundar Rao and writer A.V. Navada favoured introduction of English from class 6 onwards.

Mr. Navada said this was necessary in this era of globalisation. Mr. Rao said it would be in the class 6 that the child would have the ability to learn a new language.

Yakshagana critic M. Prabhakar Joshi spoke.

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