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School in Mishkino, Bashkortostan teaches in Mari

A multilingual school in Mishkino, Bashkortostan began teaching mathematics and drawing in the Mari language.

School No. 2 in the village of Mishkino has introduced the teaching of maths and drawing in the Mari language in the new academic year, as reported by regional media. Subjects in Mari began to be studied in primary grades. It is noted that the new practice is being introduced gradually: only a few minutes of a lesson are taught in the native language.

Two years ago, the authorities of Bashkortostan announced their intention to open a polylingual school in Mishkino, the administrative centre of a district with a predominantly Mari population. According to the initiators’ idea, the polylingual format implied the use of Russian, Mari and English languages in the educational process. At the moment, 4,500 pupils in 103 schools in Bashkortostan study the Mari language.

Mishkino District, the largest territory of compact Mari settlement outside Mari El, is located 150 kilometres from Ufa. According to the 2010 census, ethnic Mari comprised 72 per cent of the district’s population. The ancestors of the Mishkino Mari moved to the north of Bashkortostan to avoid forced Christianisation.

Mishkino was selected as the 2020 Finno-Ugric Capital of Culture.