Saturday, September 24, 2011

Monolingualism or bilingualism

Who in the current administration would dare venture that way when their uppermost consideration is winning the next general election? Which is why the vision on English has been always short-term. And what the recent reversal of the teaching of science and mathematics in English was motivated by.

No one in power has dared to think of the long term, of the potential future of a Malaysia dragged down by its lack of proficiency in the global language, of the future of the rural populace who must continue to wallow in their lack of command of the language because they are not ardently advised otherwise. To get them out of their complacency with being monolinguistic would risk raising the ire of certain interest groups – and that could be disastrous for the ruling party.

Most of us at the meeting were too polite to bring this up, but an old hand in education did ask, "What is our language policy now? Monolingualism or bilingualism?".

So, by and large, we dutifully confined ourselves to discussing the areas of training, marketing and pedagogy. We gave suggestions on how to make the noble profession of teaching seem truly so to those going into it ("most students go into teaching English because they have no choice", observed a participant); on the need to take in only teacher-trainees who had an acceptable level of proficiency in English; on getting teachers to employ non-formal teaching methods that would be filled with fun for the learners and to organise out-of-class activities; on making more use of e-learning and ICT; on what to avoid if grammar were to be taught explicitly; on how to instil confidence in English teachers and give them the support they need when this is denied them by the school environment.


Now, You are reading :
Monolingualism or bilingualism

Post a Comment

Your comments will be moderation.
Thank you...!!