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The Emergence of Multilingual Education in India: Issues Related to Media of Instruction in Border Areas of Telangana Schools
  • Suman Kothakonda
Suman Kothakonda

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My main goal is to focus on the importance of multilingual education through translanguaging pedagogies in Telangana schools especially in the areas of minority linguistic communities. India is remarkably well-known for cultural and linguistic diversity. In such a context, it is difficult to implement the right medium of instruction in which the students’ home language is different from the school language. Though there are many factors involved in delivering quality education, language plays a significant role in teaching and learning across the world. The majority of the schools encourage dominant language(s) in teaching and learning in Indian states. As a result, students of non-dominant language(s) are totally out of the classroom conversations and they slowly come to know that their languages are less prestigious and not used in schools. This leads them to show less interest in learning. Non-dominant language(s) are pushed out of important domains and such languages are impoverished with limited functions in India. In this paper, I discuss the complexity which lies in providing the right media of instruction to heterogeneous students in Indian classrooms and also explores the students’ language(s) proficiency levels in two target languages. Finally, I explain some ways to develop students’ linguistic and cognitive skills in such a multilingual environment. Two schools were, for this study, visited to understand the language(s) scenario in the Telangana region. The data was collected from 15 students who were in the IX class.Apart from this, we interacted with teachers to get their opinions on various topics in relation to students’ language skills as well as multilingual education. Extensive individual interviews and long conversations were conducted from classroom teachers in relation to students’ language skills in three languages. The data was collected through a variety of sources in order to illuminate multilingual education in Telangana schools. Oral and written samples were collected from the participants in two languages L2 & L3. In the process of data collection, each student performed spoken as well as written tasks. Oral tasks consist of discussions, role-plays, and one storytelling task based on the provided pictures. Written tasks consist of reading, listening, and writing (vocabulary, grammar, and sentence meaning). The result of the collected data reveals the proficiency levels of students in L2 & L3. The empirical data, interviews, and conversations revealed the significance of LI in schools at the right time.