Working Paper #46
Language and education policies in Georgia have two principal aspects:
enhancing knowledge of the official state language for the purposes of increased integration of national minority groups on the one hand, while protecting minority languages and the right to receive education in one’s mother tongue on the other.
Although Georgian legislation provides for equal access to education and protects the right to receive education in minority languages, conflicting legislation concerning the promotion and use of the state language has somewhat impeded the ability of minorities to realize this right in practice. Most notable is the negative effect of the reform education policy on the access of national minorities to higher education due in large part to Georgian language proficiency requirements.
This requirement has, in turn, had an impact on other aspects of the education sector, such as teacher training and the provision of textbooks in secondary education. Notwithstanding, the advancement of the knowledge of the Georgian language is indeed a crucial component of education reform and it has been identified as the priority issue for ensuring the full and effective civil integration of persons belonging to minority groups, especially for those living in substantial numbers in specific regions.
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