ON LITERACY

I think that literacy should not be considered as “a thing” or a monolithic block but rather as a process made up of several levels or stages.
• The initial stage could be considered as “BASIC MOTHER TONGUE LITERACY”. In the Maritime Republic of Mauritius, because of the complex language reality, it is advisable to make some adjustments and develop a course in BASIC BILINGUAL LITERACY (basic literacy in the two important creole languages: Mauritian and English for the island of Mauritius and Rodriguan and English for the island of Rodrigues) to be dispensed to our children from grade 1 to grade 9.
• The second stage should aim at FUNCTIONAL TRILINGUAL LITERACY from grade 10 to 13 to develop functional oracy, literacy and numeracy in Mauritian/Rodriguan, English and French. Moreover, an optional ethnic language – (in alphabetical order: Arabic, Hindi, Mandarin Chinese, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu etc.) – should be offered.
• The third stage should aim at COMPULSORY ADVANCED BILINGUAL LITERACY (in Mauritian/Rodriguan and English) for university students. Opportunities should be available for those who want to specialize in French and any ethnic or non-ethnic language.
Such a language policy will most certainly contribute to general development and the building of a RAINBOW NATION.

Date: 11.09.21

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