So English it is!
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|Fri, 06-29-2012 - 3:19am|
Sorry for being MIA so much, Ishi finsihed school in April, and started again on June 11th. We are heading to Lucknow next week for her birthday so won't be there much until the 8th.
Just an update on Ishi's speech delay. She is still not speaking more than a handful of wrods, and I got sick and tired of everybody in her playschool urging me to forget about French forever as it is not a useful language in India and is confusing her.
To their credit they are caring a great deal, the school system in India is mega competitive and entirely privatised so school admit only those they want to admit, and pretty much look at perfect potential students that will be poster kids for their school. So much so that with the admission process starting in December for kindergarten 2013-14 classes Ishi needs to speak perfect English by then as they do conduct admission interviews for kiddos! Playschools don;t have this issue, but biggers school do!
I talked to my mom about it since she has a degree in early childhood developpment and was a pre-school and KG teacher in her youth. She told me that yes in this light it was better to focus on one language at a time, and that English had to have the priority.
Needless to say I feel angry right now, because like many other parents in India I am facing the harsh fact that without English kids don't get into schools, despite English being ONE of the 15 official languages or so, for a country that has a multilingual culture I find the school system quite sick and uneducated about bilingualism, at the most hindi as a secnd language is tolerated because that's the one spoken by a wide majority of people. Anything else is to be abandonned. No one want to accept that bilingual kids tend to speak later, and that no it's not confusion, and that with proper training pre-school teachers could deal with it. They want a school system that works on the natural selection of spiecies with those failing to meet a arbitrary standard to just fail and get lost. Pretty much a do or die game...sigh!
So we switched to English, knowing that part of the problem with IShi still not speaking is not that she doesn't understand, as she showed me on several occasion that she understands both French and English perfectly, it's just that she REFUSES to speak. But that the playschool teachers refuse to get, stubborness is not a quality, it's a defect that must be corrected it seems.
The positive is that since we shifted to just English Ishi is speaking a bit more words now, so hopefully she will be ready for thes damn admission processes in December.
As a parent from another culture I feel once more discriminated upon in this country, not the first time, and India is an extremely discriminative country, not just against foreigner but different cultural groups. I'm consolled with the fact that other mums in the playschool have been told their own regional languages are useless too and urged to speak only English just like me. But the way I see it this is how you kill a coutry's cultures and languages, by favouring only one and dismissing anything that do not fit the "standard" as useless :-(