New African language policy mooted

2010-04-22 22:33
Cape Town - Universities should consider making the study of an African language other than Afrikaans compulsory for certain courses, Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande said on Thursday.

In some universities, African language departments had become weaker over the years, and strengthening them should be a "central strategy", he said in a speech at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

"I'd like to suggest that universities and professional bodies such as those representing teachers, doctors and lawyers consider making some study (perhaps for a year) of an official African language other than English and Afrikaans compulsory in order to obtain a qualification," he said.

"This would not be a first for this country; it was used successfully in the past to promote Afrikaans among non-Afrikaans speakers."

This would be beneficial to all students, help strengthen African language departments, and raise the status of African languages, the minister said.

Rising age of academics

Nzimande, who was speaking at a summit on transformation in higher education, said an issue that had concerned the sector for over a decade was the rising average age of academics and the need to sustain the academic profession.

"Despite this concern, we have not made a great deal of progress," he said.

"The average age of South African academics is over 50 and is not getting any younger...

"It is important that we identify all the reasons for this situation and that we draw up a comprehensive, medium- to long-term national plan to deal with it."

Academic council

This would involve persuading larger numbers of young graduates to go on to post-graduate studies and to take up an academic career.

It would also mean ensuring acceptable salaries and working conditions.

"This will not be easy to do and, I must confess, the job would be made a lot easier if academics were a better organised constituency and able to speak more forcefully for themselves."

Nzimande said he intended to set up a permanent higher education stakeholder council which would meet once or twice a year.

Its purpose would be to "interrogate various issues" and to keep him informed of the thinking of major stakeholders in the sector.
 

- SAPA
Read more on:    blade nzimande  |  cape town  |  education
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
/News

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Up to 40% off fashion accessories

Save up to 40% on selected handbags, purses, watches, jewellery and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R2000 on top electronics

Get every day mind bowing savings on top electronics. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

As seen on TV - New book releases at only R199 each

Get mind blowing book savings on new titles. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to 50% on Women’s month treats!

Celebrate the awesome women in your life with awesome treats like beauty products, fashion accessories, bestselling books, electronics and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 60% off - clearance sale!

Save up to 60% on appliances, books, electronics, toys, movies and more. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The virtual world can be very tempting to escape into but focus on also being present and keeping your feet anchored in reality....read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.