After meeting with more than 20 indigenous groups, the top literary organization Asam Sahitya Sabha, All Assam Students’ Union (AASU), Bodo Sahitya Sabha (BSS) and All Bodo Students Union (ABSU) warned the government to stay away from the medium of the schools.
In a joint statement, the four groups said they discussed a range of issues, such as stopping provincialization, teaching mathematics and science in grade 3 English, dual teaching methods and setting up one English medium CBSE school in each constituency. .
They also discussed the issues facing local medium-sized schools, such as poor infrastructure, lack of teachers and school closures in the name of merger.
“The groups strongly opposed all these decisions that were approved by the Assam cabinet. These are illogical, unscientific and short-sighted. These decisions will push the native languages to their deathbeds and kill the vernacular schools,” she added.
The groups will not accept the Assam government’s decisions, and all of them were against national education policies, the statement said.
“The government of Assam must renounce its adamant nature. We request the government to reconsider all these decisions as soon as possible,” it added.
A resolution was passed at the meeting to adopt agitation programs against the decisions and the four convenor groups will announce them after the upcoming Durga Puja festival.
The groups also decided to organize an educational convention, where prominent personalities will be invited to deliberate on the issues.
The parties criticized the Assam government over the decisions, claiming that the BJP-led alliance is trying to privatize schools.
The Assam cabinet had decided on July 28 that from the academic year 2023, Mathematics and Sciences from grade 3 will be taught in English in all government and provincial Assamese and other vernacular schools.
It had also approved the introduction of a dual language of instruction from classes 6 to 12 in Assamese and vernacular medium schools under the state government.
These sparked a huge controversy with all opposition political parties, major student organizations including the ABVP, top literary organizations and many social groups protesting the decisions.
By August, the Department of Education had merged 1,710 schools with other nearby institutes across the state.
Although the opposition referred to this exercise as closing the schools, the government said it had been merged with others for better infrastructure management and to improve the teacher-pupil ratio.