Three Languages Plan by CBSE

Posted by The Open Page | 10th April 2017

CBSE has decided to bring back Std X board exam. Earlier students were required to take two languages for Std X. Out of these two one could be a foreign language. In a recent proposal sent to HRD ministry in December 2016, it is proposed to follow three languages system for class X board exam.
If approved, out of these three languages one could be English. As per this proposal, foreign language could be the fourth language and can not be one of these three. Therefore, students would be required to study at least two Indian languages. These languages have to be part of Schedule VIII of the constitution. At present 22 Indian languages are listed in schedule VIII of the constitution. Students may take fourth language which can be either a foreign language or a language not included in the list of 22 languages included in the schedule. The fourth language will be non-qualifying in nature.
CBSE is likely to make this three languages rule applicable from the examination conducted from 2019 – 20 onwards. Therefore, students studying in standard VII at present shall get affected. The year of applicability is so decided because it is felt that immediate applicability will create problem and difficulties for the students as they would  required to get use to the three languages formula in short time of three years.
Students therefore now will have opportunity and dilemma to select these two languages. One surely would be Hindi for most of the students and the second would be the mother tongue. There is a school of thought that children’s learning ability is maximum if they are taught and explained in their mother tongue. May be this philosophy encouraged CBSE to propose the said three languages plan. Person like me whose daughters are KV products and therefore CBSE products too, did not learn their mother tongue, Gujarati, formally. Therefore their reading and writing ability in Gujarati is very limited. This keeps them away from Gujarati culture and literature in some way. Proposed plan thus shall eliminate such handicap from the children.

But the plan also has a flip side, mainly for defense service children and those children whose parents get posted to different states every two or three years. I am sure Kendriya Vidyalayas attached to Defense establishments will have children of all 22 languages. Therefore the question arises that, will the schools be able to guide students in all the 22 languages? This problem will not be faced by most of other CBSE schools; but needs to be addressed and taken care of adequately.

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