Monaro Portuguese School and more support for community language schools in the ACT
In the ACT, we are lucky to have a large number of community language schools committed to preserving and even expanding the use of various languages. Currently instruction in 33 languages, from Arabic to Vietnamese, is offered through these schools.
Last month, it was my privilege to attend a fundraiser in support of one of these organisations, the Monaro Portuguese School. In a speech today in the Assembly, I publicly thanked Sara Dias, the school’s coordinator and teacher, who has overseen a doubling of the school’s classes. At the fundraiser, I enjoyed my favourite Portuguese food, pasteis de nata, a rich egg custard baked in a buttery pastry. Even sweeter, however, were the voices of the young students who entertained us by singing in the Portuguese Language.
In a motion last November, the Canberra Liberals called upon the ACT Government to work more closely with the Community Language Schools Association to share teaching resources so that language education can be offered in a school setting where needed. In my speech today, I again urged that course of action.
I love our city’s multilingual social landscape and hope more can be done to increase the acquisition of other languages and to support those already engaged in this task. I wish my very best to all of Canberra’s community language schools and the dedicated women and men who operate them.