By Choekyi Lhamo
DHARAMSHALA, FEB 18: Tibetan schools situated in Karnataka seek exemption from teaching Kannada as the first or second language which is mandatory for all schools in the state, reports The Hindu. As per the Kannada Language learning Act, it is mandatory for all schools to teach Kannada since it came into effect from the 2017-18 academic year.
There are over 12 Tibetan schools in Karnataka which are affiliated to the Central Board for Secondary Education (CBSE), mostly located near Madikeri. The Education Minister of Tibetan Parliament in Exile (TPiE) met with the Minister of Primary and Secondary Education, S. Suresh Kumar, earlier this month to request the exemption from the Act.
Mr. Kumar assured the concerned authorities that they will be looking at various provisions of the Act. “At the meeting, representatives from Tibetan schools in Karnataka and the Education Minister of Tibet pointed out that that it would be difficult for them to implement the Act because they have to teach Tibetan as the first language,” an official said.
However, an official from the department said that the schools have informed the Minister that the Kannada language can be taught from the sixth class. A representative of the Tibetan schools hopes that the government would consider Tibetans an exception to this case. “Even for international schools in the State, we have made Kannada mandatory. It is a decision that needs to be taken by the government and we will follow their order,” said a senior official of the department.