English home Forum Photo Gallery Features Newsletter Archive   About US Help Site Map
- Newsletter
- Online Community
- China Biz Info
- News Archive
- Feedback
- Voices of Readers
- Weather Forecast
 RSS Feeds
- China 
- Business 
- World 
- Sci-Edu 
- Culture/Life 
- Sports 
- Photos 
- Most Popular 
- FM Briefings 
 About China
- China at a glance
- China in brief 2004
- Chinese history
- Constitution
- Laws & regulations
- CPC & state organs
- Ethnic minorities
- Selected Works of Deng Xiaoping

Home >> China
UPDATED: 08:35, June 26, 2006
Chinese lawmaker calls for compulsory minority language education
font size    

A senior Chinese lawmaker has suggested legally compelling bilingual education for ethnic minority children in order to help save the country's dwindling minority languages.

"Minority children today are reluctant to learn their own ethnic languages, and if the trend continues, these languages will disappear," said Zhang Meilan, a member of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, or the top legislature.

Zhang, one of the 960,000 Hani minority, made the comments on Sunday in an address to NPC lawmakers on the draft amendment to the Compulsory Education Law, which is in its final hearing.

Zhang said she had made the suggestion before the amendment was submitted to the legislature, but it apparently failed to attract the attention of the majority of NPC lawmakers as it was omitted from the draft.

On Sunday, Zhang urged the legislature again to include an article in the amendment to make bilingual education compulsory for minority children in the nine-year free education from elementary school to junior high.

The legislature is expected to vote on the draft amendment on Thursday.

In China, the majority Han people live with 55 ethnic minorities, 70 percent of whom had their own written languages, Zhang said, and these minority languages should be passed on to future generations.

An official survey released in April last year showed that nearly 40 minority languages in China are on the verge of extinction. The country is taking measures to save them such as publishing books and dictionaries and setting up audio data-bases.

Zhang said that if her suggestion was accepted, the Ministry of Education and the Ethnic Affairs Committee should invest in bilingual education, providing a fund for minority language preservation.

Source: Xinhua

Comments on the story Comment on the story Recommend to friends Tell a friend Print friendly Version Print friendly format Save to disk Save this

- Text Version
- RSS Feeds
- China Forum
- Newsletter
- People's Comment
- Most Popular
 Related News
- Minority-language encyclopedia makes debut

- China's first encyclopedia for ethnic minorities published in Xinjiang


Manufacturers, Exporters, Wholesalers - Global trade starts here.
Copyright by People's Daily Online, all rights reserved