Nama language to be introduced in Northern Cape schools

February 08, 2018  — 

The Northern Cape is making strides in its education system by implementing steps to introduce the indigenous Nama language in its schools. The province will be the first to do so in the country, and this is aimed at fostering inclusivity within South African schools.

The Nama language is spoken both in South Africa and Namibia, with local speakers being in the Northern Cape. The move towards creating such a school curriculum is a necessary step in recognising that learners need to engage with their culture and language on a daily basis.

The residents of the Northern Cape and Namibia share a border, which explains why both regions speak this language.

This isn’t the first time that the Nama language has been taught in schools, but the previous test project encountered a few challenges and provided insights to refine the overall curriculum. The language will be introduced to two Northern Cape schools in the coming months and the progress will be closely monitored by educators and officials.

Leading up to the project’s implementation, there were discussions with the Pan South African Language Board and the provincial education department to determine how the plan could be integrated seamlessly into the two schools and into extramural activities.

The project gives recognition to the importance of indigenous languages and how they need to be an active part of a schooling experience. Children will be able to engage with the Nama language in a way that affirms their indigenous identity. This move is especially important for the Khoi and San communities around the Northern Cape, who want their language and culture to be part of formal education.

While the Northern Cape is the first province to implement the Nama language, other minority communities around South Africa might soon see their languages added to school curriculums.

We’re proud of this step towards inclusivity within our education system and hope to see significant progress in the future.