Wed | Aug 23, 2017

Teach French from primary school

Published:Saturday | March 26, 2016 | 3:00 AM

THE EDITOR, Sir:

I appeal to the developers of school curricula, as well as the Ministry of Education, more generally, to introduce the teaching of French to students from as early as primary school.

After recently attending the Francophonie Festival at the Shortwood Teachers' College, my eyes have been opened wider to the importance of French and the benefits that can be obtained from it. I am now empowered to share the French language and I have fallen deeper in love with this wonderful language after seeing it expressed through dramatisation, poetry, dance and even song.

I believe it is time we break down the barriers to communication, and I strongly believe this can be achieved if we teach French as part of curricula. French is a rapidly growing and developing language, which has many benefits and opportunities to be obtained from it.

Jamaican students and even citizens should not be limited to only English and/or Creole. By allowing Jamaicans to know a variety of languages, we can achieve the much-longed-for change which we are yearning for. Jamaican students can now venture off in a variety of careers instead of the usual doctor, lawyer police; we can now nurture more translators, interpreters and modern-language teachers.

The business world could now be looked at from a different angle if students and citizens gain knowledge in the modern languages. More business deals, negotiations and opportunities could be accessible to students by having and knowing a variety of languages.

I love both Spanish and French and, therefore, I believe that equal importance and value should be placed on both languages, so that students like myself can be given the opportunity to love more than just English or Spanish.

Students should be given the opportunity to be different and to stand out. I strongly believe incorporating French in curricula from as early as primary school will be able to achieve just that.

I would now ask kindly that the developers of the curriculum and the Ministry of Education think about all I have said and try to implement these things and move a step forward in making Jamaica a better a place.

SANDRENE MCKENZIE

Grade 9 Student

Westwood High School