Hindi language set to be at core of Australian education system

SYDNEY: Australian education minister Peter Garrett has said no child should be denied the chance to learn an Asian language as the importance of the region increases over the next century.

Prime Minister Julia Gillard had released the Asian Century White Paper last week, which sets out 25 key goals to help Australia take advantage of Asia’s expanding profile.

The road map to 2025 includes dramatically boosting Asian studies in schools.

According to news.com.au, the paper proposes the teaching of at least one of four priority Asian languages, Chinese (Mandarin), Hindi, Indonesian and Japanese, in every school across Australia.

“Children would have the opportunity to study an Asian language from primary school through to the end of high school”, Garrett said.

Both traditional and modern teaching methods would be involved, he said.

“It is also about looking at ways in which we can use technology to deliver in the classrooms that may not have a teacher standing in the classroom, but can get access to a great teacher in another town or city and start learning languages that way as well,” Garrett said.

According to the report, Asian Century White paper has been released with a focus on the regional economy and Australian jobs.

“Creating a brother-sister relationship with schools in Asia and communicating with them via internet-based programs such as Skype was another area the government wanted educators to take”, he said.

“Many of the jobs of the future will be jobs involved in interacting with China, with India and the like,” he said.