Mother Tongue Based Multilingual Education

Publication | January 2015

Contemporary patterns of global communication and immigration have made multilingual education programmes a way of allowing children to experience multilingual backgrounds as an advantage and as a means of thriving in a multilingual world.

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The paper prepared under the Education Sector Analytical and Capacity Development Partnership (ACDP) outlines the rationale for introducing mother tongue based multilingual education (MTB-MLE) in multilingual societies. It also highlights some of the common obstacles to MTB-MLE implementation, and how they can be overcome. The paper cites the situation in Papua and outlines steps for fostering greater use of mother tongues as the language of instruction in schools.

About ACDP

The Government of Indonesia (represented by the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Ministry of Religious Affairs and the Ministry of National Development Planning/ BAPPENAS), the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), the European Union (EU) and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) have established ACDP as a facility to promote policy dialogue and institutional and organizational reform of the education sector to underpin policy implementation and help reduce disparities in provincial and district education performance.


  • Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education
  • Improved Academic Achievement
  • Increased Efficiency
  • Socio-cultural Benefits
  • Introducing the Second Language
  • Possible Obstacles to Implementation
  • Implementing MTB - MLE in Papua

Additional Details

  • Education
  • Pre-primary and basic education
  • Indonesia

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