Bengaluru: Primary and Secondary Education Minister B.C. Nagesh said that English will be taught from Primary classes in the proposed ‘Government Model Schools’, a new initiative announced in the recently tabled State Budget.
He was speaking after inaugurating the Round Table Conference organised by Kannada Sahitya Parishat at its premises in Chamarajpet here recently.
Pointing out that the State Government has already begun experimenting with bilingual text books in Kannada and English at English Medium Schools run by the State Government, Nagesh said that it was an experiment worth considering to be expanded.
Continuing, the Minister maintained that several Kannada reforms taken up by successive Governments had suffered setbacks due to multiple Court orders.
Noting that the Government is deeply concerned about the dwindling number of students in Kannada Schools, he said that the recent experiment of Karnataka Public Schools has been a success because English Medium of instruction was introduced. We need to work together to stem this tide, Nagesh observed.
The Minister responded positively to a suggestion by acclaimed Kannada writer and Saraswathi Samman awardee Dr. S. L. Bhyrappa of earmarking Rs.200 crore every year to provide Rs.3,000 financial aid to students studying in Kannada Medium.
Dr. Bhyrappa said that the aid/scholarship was first conceptualised when D.V. Sadananda Gowda was the Chief Minister, but was never implemented after he demitted office.
Now that there is a BJP Government again, the scheme is worth reviving, he contended. Arguing that students need to be given an option to write exams in the language of their choice, he maintained that this kind of experimentation could break the exclusivity of the medium of instruction.
The writer also suggested that the State move towards a bilingual medium of instruction in Kannada and English to resolve the impasse over medium of educational instruction in the State.
Kannada Sahitya Parishat President Dr. Mahesh Joshi said that the revival of Kannada Schools was crucial to Kannada-Kannadiga-Karnataka. He demanded that the State Government bring in urgent reforms such as asking all Government staff to send their wards to Kannada Schools, all exams in the State to be conducted in Kannada alone and an option to write all National exams in Kannada.
Nidumamidi Mutt Seer Sri Veerabhadra Channamalla Swamiji said that even CET and other entrance tests must be held in Kannada. Hukkeri Mutt Seer Sri Chandrashekara Shivacharya Swamiji, Education Department officials and several academicians took part in the event.