Karnataka To Expand English-Medium Instruction In State-Run Schools

Karnataka To Expand English-Medium Instruction In State-Run Schools

The minister said there is a huge demand for English medium schools in the state and, in the next three years, the government wants to open 500 more Karnataka Public Schools (KPS), that also offer English medium of instruction, in addition to Kannada.

PTIUpdated: Thursday, February 15, 2024, 10:13 PM IST
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Karnataka to Expand English-Medium Instruction in State-Run Schools | Pexels

Bengaluru: Karnataka Minister for School Education and Literacy Madhu Bangarappa on Thursday told the Legislative Assembly that the government intends to offer English as a medium of instruction in more state-run schools, in view of the rising demand for it, and to promote enrollments.

The minister said there is a huge demand for English medium schools in the state and, in the next three years, the government wants to open 500 more Karnataka Public Schools (KPS), that also offer English medium of instruction, in addition to Kannada.

Bangarappa was responding to Tirthahalli BJP MLA Araga Jnanendra who said government schools are being closed because parents want their kids to get English medium education.

"There is a huge demand for English mediums. As the government, we have a responsibility to take steps by also giving priority to Kannada...(but) parents themselves want an English medium for their children," Bangarappa said.

Increase number of students

Studies by the school education department on why an increasing number of children were quitting government schools mainly cited the lack of English medium education along with factors like inadequate infrastructure, he said.

"The solution is to offer both mediums in government schools so that parents can choose. Our intent is to provide both mediums," Bangarappa stressed. English as the medium of instruction is being offered in about 300 KPS, he told the house.

"The government's target is to have one KPS for every two gram panchayats. Parents are willing to pay for English education, and the same can happen in government English medium schools with the help of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funding. There is good response and small level investments," he added.

In the next three years, the government wants to open 500 more KPS, Bangarappa said. "It can’t be done overnight because it requires creating infrastructure and teachers who can teach in English. Also there are certain guidelines for the recruitment process," the minister emphasised.

Further stating that his department wants to bring back kids who have quit government schools, the minister said, "We want to create a system in which both mediums of instruction are run on the same premises.

"But, if the number of Kannada-medium students becomes less, it will send out a different message. That should not happen... Also, in several schools, there are only five students. We need to handle that carefully," he added.

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