Mixed response to ‘Marathi must’ diktat | india | Hindustan Times
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Mixed response to ‘Marathi must’ diktat

The state government’s move making it compulsory for students of all primary schools to learn the language beginning this year, has evoked mixed reactions from academic circles, report Sayli Udas Mankikar & Serena Menon.

india Updated: May 27, 2009 01:37 IST

Compulsory Marathi in schools? Some like it, some don’t.

The state government’s move making it compulsory for students of all primary schools to learn the language beginning this year, has evoked mixed reactions from academic circles.

“Implementing the decision will be a very difficult job,” said Avnita Bir, principal of RN Podar High School, a CBSE school.

“Children have a tough time just learning Hindi. At that age, Marathi as a mandatory subject might be very hard for them and for us to implement,” said Bir.

A government resolution dated May 25, 2009 makes it compulsory for schools of English and other regional mediums to have 2-hours of Marathi classes every week.

“In CBSE schools, we get students from all over the country and they keep moving because of their parents’ professions. Since they spend very little time in these schools, spending a year learning Marathi might be very time- consuming,” said Deepshika Srivastava, principal, Rajhans Vidhyala, a CBSE school in Andheri.

“Initially, we had given children an option of the subject, but we hardly had any takers,” she added.

However, Dr K.V. Kushal, regional director (western region) DAV Public Schools, said: “This is a welcome move. It will help students understand and relate with local culture and build communication proficiency.”

President of the Parent-Teachers’ Association United Forum, Arundhati Chavan, endorsed the view.

“Learning the local language helps students enhance their social skills and understanding. It is a good move,” she said.

The state government said the move was to help students understand the local language to enable better social and cultural understanding of their environment.

It has got the Maharashtra Council for Educational Research and Training, Pune to design the new syllabus that adopts different communication and traditional methods of teaching the language.