Under the ‘Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat’ mission developed by NCERT, the Education Ministry launches the ‘Bhasa Sangam Initiative.’ The goal of this initiative is to facilitate learning in vernacular languages.
A professor in the National Council of Educational Research (NCERT) said, “In the VIII Schedule of the Indian Constitution, 22 languages are recognized. However, 47 languages are taught in Indian schools. For example, Mizo and Khasi are not in the VIII Schedule. Though, taught at the primary school level. Even, we have numerous textbooks in non-scheduled languages.”
Further, he says, “We don’t have any textual material for some languages. Therefore, such languages are not taught in schools. As per the government guidelines, NCERT is making efforts to incorporate all regional languages and non-scheduled languages in the primary school level curriculum.”
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The objective behind ‘Bhasha Sangam Initiative’ is to create familiarity with regional languages. Also to promote linguistic harmony among Indians. The NCERT’s professor said “We are creating online courses for students to learn any of the 22 languages in schools. Its mode will be based on the Massive Open Online Courses or MOOC.”
“Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) also provides 40 languages including foreign languages too. Though, huge improvement needs to be made to develop materials. We have suggested this activity for classes VI to X. Students will get familiarised with one language for 20 days. Then, the class can choose another language,” he added.
Besides, the Central Institute of Indian Languages (CIIL), Mysore has developed primers in all the Indian languages and the unrecognized languages too.
Karthik B principal at Narayana e-Techno School, Bangalore says, “Learning a new language is beneficial for the younger generation. As it helps to open a new world and enhance their language skills.”
Further, he says, “Language skills can be developed as a separate skill course in schools. It encourages children’s thinking abilities and helps them to create and maintain relationships. After all, language is the foundation of everything.”
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