Repository logo

An analysis of multilingualism as an approach to language-in-education policies of the Department of Basic Education in relation to the promotion of indigenous languages as languages of teaching and learning, in accordance with section 29(2) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa.

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title



The Constitution of South Africa recognises eleven official languages, nine of which are considered indigenous African languages. This recognition seeks to provide for language protection, promote multilingualism and create unity in a diverse country. Furthermore, these rights are tailored to promote the founding values of the Constitution, which are amongst others, the protection of human dignity, equality, and non-racism. The Constitution also provides for language rights that promote multilingualism in education through section 29(2) which provides that everyone has the right to receive education in any official language of choice in a public education institution where that education is reasonably practicable. Further section 29(2) provides that the state has a positive duty to ensure that this right is effectively accessible and implemented through the consideration of various reasonable educational alternatives. This dissertation will therefore critically analyse the Language-in-Education policy (LiEP) measures of the Department of Basic Education, as a measure in the fulfilment of the state’s obligation to effectively provide access to section 29(2). The purpose of this analysis is to examine whether the current language policy promotes African languages as languages of instruction. In so doing, ensuring effective access to the right to choose a language of instruction as provided for by the Constitution for all learners.


Masters Degree. University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban.