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Title: The hegemonic position of English as a medium of instruction at primary school level in KwaZulu-Natal, and its impact on parents' preferences of schooling for their children
Authors: Naidoo, Jeevarathanum 
Issue Date: 21-Aug-2012
This study is concerned with the choices parents of second language learners
make with regard to the schooling of their children in respect of medium of
instruction, and explores the reasons why parents choose to disregard
education in their mother tongue in favour of English as a medium of instruction.
This is contrary to the Language in Education Policy, as the Department of
Education instils in principals, educators and parents the need for children at
primary school level to be taught in their mother tongue. The theoretical
framework used to address the problem was the Critical Language Approach,
this being an appropriate position from which to investigate language and
power. A combination of questionnaires, interviews and observation was used
to acquire data from parents and management in a large primary school in
KwaZulu-Natal. After analysis of the data, which confirmed the hegemonic
position of English as influencing choice of medium of instruction by parents of
English second language learners, a model was developed to assist them to
see the possible consequences of various choices. The model comprised a tenpoint
questionnaire to identify needs, a flow chart diagram resulting from the
needs analysis, a pictograph to assist stakeholders to understand the relevant
choices available, and workshops to support the choice of medium of
instruction. The value of the research, it is thought, lies in clarifying the various
influences at play, in particular, the hegemonic position of English, and offering
stakeholders a rational, rather than political or emotional basis for the choice of
medium of instruction for second language learners, as well as pointing out the
possible consequences of such choices.
Thesis in compliance with the requirements for the Doctor’s Degree
in Technology: Language Practice, Durban University of Technology, Durban, South Africa, 2012.
Appears in Collections:Theses and dissertations (Arts and Design)

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