Vice-chancellors and language experts from all 26 public universities met virtually from 28 to 29 September to facilitate a common understanding on the New Language Policy Framework for Public Higher Education Institutions, and to contemplate ways to implement this policy framework.
This policy framework comes into effect from January 2022. The Colloquium, hosted virtually from Stellenbosch University, was a first in a series of engagements to be hosted by universities and under the leadership of the C0PAL.
The purpose was to:
- Provide a platform for a robust intellectual engagement in the current debates on the New Language Policy Framework for Public Higher Education Institutions.
- Further unpack the philosophical discourse and the implications of the newly gazetted policy framework, as well as the broader systemic issues affecting and foregrounding multilingualism, transformation, and decolonisation within the context of the CoPAL and the sector agenda.
- Explore strategies to harness and deploy the necessary resources to support Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in successfully implementing the policy framework.
Alongside vice-chancellors, deputy vice-chancellors and language experts drawn from USAf’s CoPAL, other delegates in attendance were a retired member of the judiciary and senior officials from the departments of Higher Education and Training (DHET), Science and Innovation (DSI), Basic Education and (DBE), Arts and Culture. Senior representatives of the Pan South African Language Board were also in attendance (PSALB). At its peak, about 200 delegates had linked in to attend this purely online event.