What language do they use in schools in South Africa?

From my understanding, South Africa has 11 official languages.

Then, what language do they use to teach general subjects like history, math, science and fine arts in public schools?

In the big cities like Johannesburg, Cape Town or Durban, do they have English speaking schools, Afrikaans speaking schools, Zulu speaking schools, Xhosa speaking schools and etc?

If they do, can one(one's parent) choose which school s/he will attend?

What about in higher educational institutions like colleges and universities? Which language do they mainly use at universities in South Africa?

8 Answers

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Schools are mostly English or Afrikaans and universities are mostly English, with a few that teach in Afrikaans. Very few schools use an African language as the primary medium for instruction. Although we have 11 official languages, the government would probably prefer if everyone would just speak English, as they are doing very little to promote other languages.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The main languages used in schools are English, Xhosa, Zulu and Afrikaans, depending upon the area.

    The most widely used language is English. Yes, parents do have some say as to where the child can go to school, but this is not actually much of a problem since South Africa is pretty segregated, meaning that a Xhosa or Zulu school will be situated in an almost entirely Xhosa or Zulu community.

    Most South African universities teach in English. A few still offer Afrikaans and Stellenbosch University is still primarily Afrikaans.

  • 1 decade ago

    Government schools all use one or two of the official languages. Which one(s) they use is determined by the School Governing Body and depends on the requirements of the community that the school serves. Most schools offer English at least at 2nd language level. There are also a few private schools that use non-official languages such as German, Greek, Hebrew, etc.

    Colleges and universities also use the official languages although English predominates at universities. A major political issue in the Afrikaans community is that the historically Afrikaans universities are under pressure to switch to English even though they have become (or have been for ages) bilingual with English.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Well there are only three languages that the government exams are set in which is English, Afrikaans or Zulu. But private schools do offer more languages.

    Source(s): www.eastrand.womf.com
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  • 1 decade ago

    For general subjects, only two langauges are used, viz. Afrikaans and/or English. This is because those subject are still written in those two subjects.

    While majority of the schools, especially those attended by black learners/students would teach mainly to exclusively in English, some schools were afrikaans speaking children dominate still teach mainly or exclusively in Afrikaans.

    All universities teach in English, with about five offering those subjects in Afrikaans.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    I am a student at a school in Cape Town, our school teaches in English, I am pretty sure that for your matric you have to do 2 languages but if you come from another country your children might be exempt from doing an extra language besides english

  • English is the medium of instruction and the language of government, they do have some Afrikaans schools as well

  • 1 decade ago

    I would say english...but in the playground we spoke zulu amongst our friends.

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