Dr. Martha Dijkhoff, Former Minister of Education for the Netherland Antilles: “Patois Can Be Used to Teach English”

Dr. Martha Martha Dijkhoff, Former Minister of Education for the Netherland Antilles, giving a speech at the 2010 International Centre for Caribbean Language Research (ICCLR) 2 day conference, which was held on January 13-14, 2010 at the University of the West Indies Mona.

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Regional officials want Caribbean Creole to be included in educational system

Published on January 18, 2011
by Caribbean News Now Staff http://bit.ly/jxXuIH

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Prominent regional officials feel that Caribbean Creole are languages in their own right and believe they should be treated as such and nationalised.

A large number of educationalists and high ranking officials held a meeting last weekend at Mona Visitors’ Lodge at the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Jamaica The participants discussed the draft of the Charter on Language Rights and Language Policy in Creole-Speaking .

Professor Ian Robertson, a linguist, said, “These languages give a deep sense of self. When we lose self, we become a blob of people. People who speak a language have a greater degree of maturity than those who don’t.”

Dr Martha Dijkhoff, a presenter at the Jamaican conference and former Minister of Education in the Netherlands Antilles, argued that children are more comfortable within themselves when they are taught in their mother tongue. Dijkhoff said that, in Jamaica, patois can be used to teach English.

Sir Colville Young, governor general of Belize, who attended the conference said it was time for the Caribbean to focus on the role Creole can play in its development.

“No longer are the Creole languages described as mongrelised or bastardised jargonised languages. We must accept our Creole languages,” Young said.

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About profesorbaker

Thomas Baker is the Past-President of TESOL Chile (2010-2011). He enjoys writing about a wide variety of topics. The source and inspiration for his writing comes from his family.
This entry was posted in Culture, Debates, Education, Education Technology, EFL. Bookmark the permalink.

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