Communications expert questions move to use local language in teaching

Communications expert Kwame Kakari is questioning government’s commitment to implementing a GES policy requiring basic school pupils to be taught in their local languages.

He said it will be prudent for the country to first develop all the languages and not choose one language above the other.

According to him, people have failed to learn their local languages because “we have most or all of our books in written in the English language”.

Education Minister Jane Naana Opoku Agyeman asked heads and teachers of basic schools to desist from using English language as the sole medium of instruction in the classroom.

She noted that the English language is introduced too early making it is difficult to prepare students adequately for higher academic learning.

“When we teach children in languages that they do not understand, teaching and learning does not take place and frustrations begin to build,” she said.

The minister said studies had shown that students performed better when taught in the local language and appealed to teachers to endeavour to use the local language as a medium of instruction at the basic school level.

But Prof Kakari said this will be impossible unless some books written in English language are translated into the local languages just like the Bible and other books have been translated into Twi and other languages. “It is the right way to go,” he stressed.

He, however, doubts that the government has the political will to implement what the education minister has suggested.

“Unfortunately from my point of view I don’t think the government she is in can even implement what she has proposed” he stated.

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