Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik reinforces on his commitment for tribal children of the State
Report by Odisha Diary bureau, Bhubaneswar: KISS-BvLF Mother Tongue based Multilingual Early Childhood Education Learning Laboratory’ has inaugurated by Chief Minister Naveen Pattnaik on 25th August 2013 at KISS.
Inaugurating the lab Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik stated that “in July last year we passed a notification for developing curriculum in ten tribal languages for the pre primary and he reinforced his commitment of making quality early childhood education in mother tongue a reality for 1.4 million tribal children of the state. “
The Early Childhood Development Program through Mother Tongue based Multilingual Learning (MLE) is the first program of its type in India. This unique program is instituted by Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences (KISS) within its premises in collaboration with Bernard van Leer Foundation (BvLF).
Dr. Achyuta Samanta, Founder KIIT University and Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences, said “It is imperative that a state like Odisha whose population is immensely diverse in linguistic and cultural characteristic and with 1/4th of its people belonging to the 62 tribal communities to have a policy on Mother Tongue based multilingual Early Childhood education. Kalinga Institute of Social Sciences with twenty thousand tribal children is the best laboratory for implementing Mother Tongue based language education where children can transition smoothly into formal education system with a better foundation. Inauguration of the Multilingual Language Lab at KISS is a step forward towards achieving quality early childhood education.
“One year has passed since passing of the government’s directive by the former Chief Secretary Mr Bijay Patnaik , the government’s initiative in developing Naba-Arunima has been praiseworthy, it has been culture-specific as stated by OPEPA, we are just few steps away from making mother tongue based Early Childhood Education a reality for 1.4 million tribal children in Odisha” says Ido Mandal State Convenor, Odisha Adivasi Manch.
Ms Dharitri Patnaik, India Representative of Netherlands based private foundation Bernard van Leer foundation (BvLF) which has been supporting the Campaign for a policy on mother tongue based Early Childhood Education for tribal children in Odisha said “pedagogy is crucial when we are dealing with young children in their formative years, as that is what creates a foundation for further learning. As this is the very first time such an approach has been initiated, Odisha has become a role model for other states in India. With proper steps such as regular training of the Anganwadi teachers, recruitment of teachers from the tribal community would benefit the process. We hope Odisha should be the first state in India to have a policy on Mother Tongue based multi-lingual Early Childhood Education for its indigenous children.”