Mumbai: Now, English language option for BMC schools

Mumbai: Students would now be able to study subjects like Mathematics and Science in the English language rather than regional languages. In an attempt to help students cope with difficulties due to the language barrier, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has begun English language training for its teachers in civic-run schools.

Around 10,000 teachers of 732 civic -run schools are being trained to master the English language. This initiative of the civic body along with the help of the British Council is being conducted at four training centres once a week. The training programme has been going on every year since 2013 and this year around 58 teachers were initially trained to help impart the training to other teachers.

There are over 1,048 civic-run schools of eight different mediums like English, Hindi, Marathi, Urdu, Gujarati, Tamil, Telugu and Kannada. Mahesh Palkar, education officer of the BMC, told the Free Press Journal, “Students find it difficult to study the lessons of Mathematics and Science subjects in regional languages or their mother tongue. The English language will help them to cope with these subjects in the future.”

This year students of class one studying in 732 bilingual or semi-English schools would have two languages under the first language category. Prakash Charate, deputy education officer of the BMC, said, “The first language would be English and the mother tongue of the students studying in class one in our semi-English schools. The subjects like Mathematics and Science would be taught in the English language while other subjects may continue to be taught in the language of the mother tongue of the students.”

Teachers claimed that there is lack of usage of the English language in BMC schools which discourages parents to admit their children in these schools. A teacher said, “The civic-run schools provide all the facilities for free. It is good to witness that the focus on the English language is increasing.” Various creative methods like animation and interactive sessions are used for imparting English lessons in the schools.

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