What is a better medium of instruction at schools? Should Indian kids go to English medium schools or to schools that teach in regional / local languages e.g. Hindi, Marathi etc? I believe there is an overwhelming majority in India who favour admitting their kids to English Medium schools.
I am a strong proponent of introducing the student early on to English. There are 3 reasons for it.
Knowing English is vital
It is the language of computers. It is the language of conversation. It is the language of business. It is the language of Science and it is the language the world speaks. Lack of fluency in English can be a huge hindrance in the future.
Early introduction will help to build comfort with the language
We think in the language we are comfortable with. And we are comfortable with languages we pick up early on. So sooner you introduce a student to English, the easier it is to adopt to it. In fact, science has proven that our linguistic abilities, i.e. the ability to pickup new languages, go down drastically with age.
Early on, we can try without worrying about mistakes or failure
The older we grow, more conscious we are of ourselves and of committing mistakes. At a young age we are not afraid to commit mistakes or be corrected. However, as we grow older, the stakes are higher. That is why, most people will not try to practice something new at their jobs.
The bottom line is that we need to teach our kids in English because it is vital for their future and for that we must start early. All this is great, but we still need to consider that children learn at their own pace. Also English is not the only thing that they have to learn at school. So we need to strike the right balance in introducing the kids to a new language.