1. Language acquisition and competence has been identified as an area of priority at both national and provincial level.
2. The Department of Basic Education (DBE) introduced the teaching of English Across the Curriculum (EAC) as a means of strengthening the Language of Learning and Teaching (LoLT) from Grades 1 to 12, thus addressing the barrier factor and mitigating the negative impact the withdrawal of language compensation may have. Umalusi, the Council of Quality Assurance, has made a determination to retain the language compensation at 3% for learners who study through the medium of English as a second language in Grade 12 from 2016 until 2022.
3. National Senior Certificate results indicate that learners with limited English proficiency and inadequate cognitive academic language skills are underachieving across the curriculum. This point highlights the fact that the language of instruction and academic achievement are directly linked. Therefore, a learner’s language ability has a huge impact on results as all content areas are embedded in language.
4. Currently there are two LoLTs at Further Education and Training level in South African schools. These are English and Afrikaans. A large number of schools in the province offer English as the LoLT.
5. It is imperative that all learners are maximally exposed to the LoLT to be able to gain sufficient mastery in order to communicate effectively in both written and oral communication. Schools are requested to reduce the amount of code switching and code mixing in order to ensure maximum exposure to the LoLT as the language of assessment. In the case of a large number of schools in this province, this would refer to English.
6. All teachers need to take cognisance of this and should include the teaching of the language of the content subjects in their planning and preparation. This includes teaching the terminology of the subject.
7. The strategy is demonstrated through the DBE’s Manual for Teaching English Across the Curriculum: Book 2. The manual is a compilation of subject-specific activities and lesson preparation demonstrations developed by provincial and district officials and lead teachers representing all phases. Support material and the manual for EAC can be found at: http://www.education.gov.za/TeachingEnglish/tabid/729/Default.aspx.
8. Teachers are encouraged to have a text-rich classroom environment to promote language acquisition. This may include a word wall, appropriate charts and a collection of books and articles for the subject being taught.
9. In addition, the language of assessment needs to be explicitly taught to learners so that they will be able to answer the questions being asked. Teachers must focus on key words, question words and content words. Remember that every teacher is a language teacher and every lesson should engage learners in reading and writing.
10. The Western Cape Education Department encourages all schools to implement the provincial language strategy that promotes integration across subjects and the teaching of language across the curriculum.
11. Kindly bring the contents of this minute to the attention of all teachers concerned.

DATE: 2017:05:26