“The Language Policy for Namibian Schools: is it working?” Lecture by Professor Dr Andree-Jeanne Tötemeyer

Topic“The Language Policy for Namibian Schools: is it working?”
Presented by Professor Dr Andree-Jeanne Tötemeyer
LanguageEnglish. Brief summaries in German will be made and
questions in German are welcome.
Date17 March 2022
TimeAt 6pm
PlaceSwakopmund Museum Lecture hall

On Thursday the 17th of March at 6pm the Scientific Society Swakopmund presents the lecture “The Language Policy for Namibian Schools: is it working?” in the Swakopmund Museum Lecture hall. The speaker will be presenting in English. Brief summaries in German will be made and questions in German are welcome.

The entrance is free, donations welcome.


The Topic

The language policy for Namibian schools instituted by the new government in 1990 will be discussed against the background of the language landscape of multi-lingual Namibia. The choice of English as the main language of instruction in a country that never was an English colony and in which, at the time, English was the home language of less than 1% of the population, will be critically examined.
The question will be discussed whether home language/mother tongue education for only three years (Grades 1-3) is sufficient to build a sound cognitive basis in junior primary learners for an early switch to English as the medium of instruction.


Professor Dr Andree-Jeanne Tötemeyer, a writer and researcher, specialised for 47 years in library and
information science, the sociology of reading, children’s and youth readership and the promotion of children’s literature in African languages. More recently, her focus has widened to language policy for schools, multilingualism and publishing for African children. She trained librarians and information specialists at four universities, i.e. the universities of Stellenbosch, Transkei, Western Cape and Namibia. Her last position was that of founder, Professor and Head of the Department of Information Studies of the University of Namibia.

“The Language Policy for Namibian Schools: is it working?” Lecture by Professor Dr Andree-Jeanne Tötemeyer

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