In Sweden, children and young people whose language background is not Swedish have been receiving teaching and support in their mother tongue since the late 1960s. The purpose is to give students the best possible opportunities while they are at school.
In 1977, the Swedish Government and Parliament decreed that students should have the right to study their mother tongue in order to develop bilingual skills and strengthen their ethnic identity. Learning the language that is spoken at home is important for the linguistic, social and personal development of children and young people. Recent studies show that learning the mother tongue has a generally positive effect on educational achievement.
In Stockholm, an administrative body with responsibility for teaching mother tongue languages was founded in the early 1970s. Today this center is called the Language Center for Mother Tongue and Minority Languages.
The Language Center has extensive operations and is a leading organization in this field throughout Sweden. Over 300 teachers covering more than 50 languages teach around 11,000 students. We operate a comprehensive development program in order to ensure the continuous improvement of our teaching.