|This article takes, as a starting
point, the theoretical tools proposed by language planning in order to evaluate the
language policy as its is put into practice in Mauritian schools.
After a presentation of the sociolinguistic situation of Mauritius and of the regulations on language in the public education system, the main part of study is devoted to a critical analysis of linguistic practices
in the Mauritian school. The analysis shows the difficulties that confront the teachers since they must choose an adequate language of teaching in order to transmit their message. The difficulties in respecting the official regulation involves a more or less systematic language management which often involves communication problems.
According to the author, the observations should not however occasion a requestioning of the linguistic policy of the Mauritian school. So he proposes after a study of the alternatives to the current regulation. In his opinion, it is not the options of the linguistic policy in Mauritian schools that are the cause of their weaknesses but the way in which they are put in practice. In effect, the regulations are not followed with the appropriate measures that are necessary to ensure their proper implementation.
If other sectors can support such weaknesses, such is not the case of the education system. The languages, in particular the languages of teaching, have a paramount role to play. Furthermore, the rigour of the organisation of this institution (curriculum vitae, program of study, evaluation of competence at the end of study) and, especially, the expectations of the community in regards to this institution, require some rational decisions followed by adequate implementation measures.
For the moment, these limitations are not pinned down because linguistic militants operate from observations ideologically marking their points of view. On the other hand, for political reasons, the State is satisfied to maintain the status quo. The study confirms that if linguistic regulation is a sociolinguistic process of resolution of conflicts, the school cannot be designed as a place of resolution for these conflicts. In the educational sector, it is necessary to manage the system in order to reconcile psycho-teaching parameters, resources available and political concerns.
Further to the analysis of the problems being studied, this article shows how the linguist can protect him or herself against ideological standpoints by having recourse to a rigorous conceptual framework in order to carry out his or her observations. By doing this, it does not deresponsabilise him or her. On the contrary, the work is useful for the community while taking part in the debate and using tools which are above suspicion