International Mother Language Day 2018: Linguistic diversity and multilingualism count for sustainable development
Asia-Pacific's remarkable cultural and linguistic diversity is one of this region's greatest strengths, with tremendous promise to advance the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development – however, that potential can only be realized if all learners have access to education in a language they can understand.
UNESCO promotes mother tongue-based multilingual education as a key pillar of equitable, inclusive quality education for all. This infographic illustrates some of the powerful ways in which this approach can advance our global goals of peaceful, sustainable development.
This year, UNESCO Bangkok will host a special celebration to mark International Mother Language Day (21 February) along with the Embassy of Bangladesh.
The Ambassador of Bangladesh, H.E. Ms. Saida Muna Tasneem, will open the event along with UNESCO Bangkok Director (a.i) Maki Hayashikawa, and Dr Watanaporn Ra-Ngubtook, Thailand Deputy Permanent Secretary for Education and Secretary-General of the Thai National Commission for UNESCO.
MTB-MLE expert Dr. Kirk Person from SIL International will speak about the importance of the approach in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, while Prof. Kriengkrai Watanasawad from Thammasat University will discuss the importance of mother tongues in preserving intangible heritage/cultural identity.
The event will also feature cultural performances from Bangladesh, Belgium, China, Colombia, France, India, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Russia and Thailand.
- International Mother Language Day 2018 - Linguistic diversity and multilingualism: keystones of sustainability and peace (official page)
- Director-General's message for IMLD 2018
- Infographic (PDF)
- Mother tongue-based multilingual education: the key to unlocking SDG 4: quality Education for All
- MTB-MLE - Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education: Lessons Learned from a Decade of Research and Practice
- Language of instruction in Southeast Asia (Background paper prepared for the 2017/8 Global Education Monitoring Report)
- MTB MLE resource kit: Including the excluded: promoting multilingual education,
- If you don’t understand, how can you learn?, Global Education Monitoring Report Policy Paper 24, UNESCO, 2016
- UNESCO Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger