The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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English medium mandatory

Ranchi, June 27: Secondary and higher secondary students in over 1,500 institutions across the state would now have the option of lectures in English.

But the authorities are not sure whether there are enough teachers capable of teaching the subjects in English.

A board meeting of the Jharkhand Academic Council (JAC) today approved the implementation of both English and Hindi as medium of instruction/teaching by teachers in about 1,200 high schools, 170 Inter colleges and constituent and affiliated colleges under three universities which offer intermediate studies.

Declaring this as another landmark decision after the introduction of CBSE curriculum in the state, JAC chairman Shaligram Prasad Yadav said so far the English and Hindi scripts were used in question papers of the higher secondary (intermediate) examination. “But the medium of instruction was only Hindi. Now we have made it compulsory for English to be a medium of teaching along with Hindi,” he said.

The same decision was taken for the secondary (matriculation) level. Here, students could answer their exam papers in English, Hindi, Bengali, Oriya and Urdu. “The question papers (besides that of language papers) were printed in English and Hindi for both matriculation and intermediate examinations. But the medium of teaching in the secondary level was in these four languages, not English. Now English would also be used as medium of teaching,” a source said.

However, the JAC chairman fumbled when asked about how the same set of teachers would instruct students in English, when they are not comfortable speaking the language. “It would depend on the school’s interest and willingness of students,” he said.

Yadav said that the board approved this resolution proposed by him. This would now be sent to the state government for the final approval.

The board meeting, which took place after nine months, included for the first time two legislators, Annapurna Devi and Manoj Yadav as vice-chairpersons. Another legislator in same capacity, Ravindra Mahto, skipped the meet, while state secondary education director Arun Kumar Sinha, an ex-officio member of the board, was present.

In another important decision, post-facto approvals were given to all examinations and results conducted by JAC in 2007 up to the present. “We gave 167 schools permission for establishment while approval was given to managing committees of 200 schools which had got permission from the government,” a source said.

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