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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:The Role of the Primary Language in the Bilingual-Bicultural Education in Zimbabwe
Authors:Peresuh, Munhuweyi
Masuku, Jesta
Year:2002
Periodical:Zambezia (ISSN 0379-0622)
Volume:29
Issue:1
Pages:27-37
Language:English
Notes:biblio. refs.
Geographic terms:Zimbabwe
Southern Africa
Subjects:languages of instruction
language policy
mother tongues
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Education and Oral Traditions
Ethnic and Race Relations
education
Language teaching
official languages
Bilingualism
educational systems
External link:http://digital.lib.msu.edu/projects/africanjournals/html/itemdetail.cfm?recordID=1145
Abstract:Zimbabwe has two major sociolinguistic groups, namely, Shona and Ndebele speakers, constituting more than 70 percent and more than 15 percent of the population, respectively. There are also several indigenous minority linguistic groups, which constitute slightly over 12 percent of the population. English, the home language of less than 1 percent of the population, however, is the official medium of instruction in the country's educational system from the fourth year of elementary school to university. Indigenous languages have been marginalized as a matter of policy in preference to English. English is also the medium of communication in all official communications in the country. This paper argues that there is confusion between the learning of English for use as a national language of communication, and its role as an effective medium of instruction for all other school subjects and at all levels of education. It stresses the importance of pupils' home languages as medium of instruction, especially in primary school. Zimbabwe should reconsider its present strategies in this respect. Bibliogr., notes, sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]
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