Diana Sartauova – Center of Pedagogical Measurements of Nazarbayev Intellectual Schools, Kazakhstan (CPM/NIS), Esther van Loo – Centraal Instituut voor Toetsontwikkeling, The Netherlands (Cito)
For some 5 years now, NIS Kazakhstan work together with Cito on the development and implementation of a Language Monitoring System in which are followed student performances in Kazakh, Russian an English. In the system all four language skills are monitored, i.e. the reproductive skills of listening and reading, as well as the productive skills of speaking and writing. Kazakhstan is executing a national trilingual policy that facilitates school graduates to become advanced language users in Kazakh, Russian and English at CEFR-level C1. NIS have been the first to start implementing this trilingual policy. In all 21 schools subjects are given in one of the three languages, e.g.: History of Kazakhstan is taught in Kazakh, World history is taught in Russian, Economy is taught in English. It stands to reason that for a successful school career it is important that students master all three languages on a high level. Furthermore, the knowledge of three languages also aids success after school, in an international and globalizing world. In the process of growing towards ‘national trilingualism’ for NIS it is important to stay closely tuned to its population and to check on them regularly. Apart from all cyclic work of developing tests, setting standards etc, Cito and NIS have conducted psychometrical research to find out more about the state of affairs of NIS population’s trilingualism. In our presentation we would like to share and exchange experiences in language monitoring in changing national educational policies. We would like to discuss successes, challenges and plans for the future.