You could almost think that there is no longer a language imposition in Spain because everything seems so calm. Unfortunately, the opposite is the case.
It's just not worth describing every single case every day when attention is distracted by big politics. But there too, something is now happening in the European Parliament which, despite its questionable democratic significance, is not entirely without importance.
On 17 February, esdiario.com reported: „Compromís hands over the language policy of the Comunida Valenciana to the Catalanist units“ Compromís is a party alliance in Valencia consisting of the Greens and the Bloc Nacionalista Valenciana-
The article states, among other things, that the Generalitat Valenciana, through the Ministry of Education led by Compromís, continues to take steps to revive one of its most controversial projects: the Office of Linguistic Rights, a language police-like institution similar to an existing office in Catalonia.
This office was overturned by the TSJV (Valencian Court) and later upheld by the Supreme Court. However, Compromís saved it with the trick of including it in the 2023 budget law.
Now Compromís, announces that it will leave the control of this language police to the organisations of Catalanism, ultra-funded by both Catalonia and Valencian administrations with public money, including the notorious Acció Cultural del País Valencià and the Plataforma per la Llengua, notorious for campaigns to persecute shopkeepers or teachers.
On 18 February, elCatalán.es reported on an Argentine journalist who is being persecuted by the Catalan government for criticising the Catalan language imposition. The persecution consists of him having to pay back a grant he received two years ago. He had written an article in November 2020: „How to say xenophobia in Catalan?“
Shortly afterwards, the Catalan Escuela de Todos (School for Everybody) demands, according to El País, that Spanish be maintained as an official language throughout the country, because more and more regional governments are cornering the Spanish language. The Escuela de Todos was founded in December 2021 because the Catalan government still refuses to implement the decisions of the highest Catalan and Spanish courts to provide at least a modest 25% Spanish education.
On 28 February, some teachers of a public school in Valencia responded to this demand: ' href='https://www.abc.es/espana/comunidad-valenciana/colegio-valencia-rompe-autorizaciones-paternas-alumnos-primaria-20230228165841-nt.html'>„If you don't want Valenciano, you shouldn't come to this school!“ These teachers are also paid from the taxes of the majority in Valencia whose mother tongue is Spanish. This is especially true for the city of Valencia, for which the newspaper Levante stated as late as January: „The capital does not speak Valenciano“. Although 80% of the population understand it „thanks“ to schooling, only half can speak it.
' href='/index.php?show=&idioma=english'>„The mayoress of Gerona boasts that she 'never' speaks in Spanish“. Message from 3 March. Gerona has about 100,000 inhabitants and is located in the north-east of Catalonia.
„Socialists and separatists boycott a debate in favour of bilingualism in the European Parliament“. The report says: The debate is part of a petition by the Asamblea por una Escuela Bilingüe (AEB [Assembly for a Bilingual School]) from 2017 on the Catalan language immersion model. Immersion here means teaching only or mainly in Catalan, even for Spanish-speaking pupils who form the majority in Catalonia.
„The debate in the Petitions Commission has now been boycotted by both socialists and separatists by not turning up to the meeting in a lack of respect ... for the families and organisations fighting for bilingual education in Catalonia.“ It seems that a substantive debate in favour of the students around this issue is to be avoided. Instead, unfortunately, defamation is again being used as usual, as was made clear by the statement of ERC MEP Diana Riba, in which she contemptuously remarked: „but the petition is still open and is even being debated in a committee hearing that benefits the political agenda of the right and the extreme right.“
True! This right-wing agenda does not benefit parents and students any more than the agenda of the left and separatists! Those affected are only driven into the arms of the right with this „left-wing“ rationale. Even advocating so-called bilingualism cannot be a final solution, as will be understood later in the article.
The good news: After complaints from several petitioners, it was decided last October to send a mission to analyse the teaching situation in Catalan schools in the second half of 2023. After 6 years! Well, at least!
To understand the situation better, the AEB does not even demand the right of parents to decide on the language of instruction of their children. Bilingualism here only means teaching at least 25% Spanish in addition to Catalan.
The „big“ advantage of this form of bilingualism for the pupils would be: they can converse in Catalan (9 million speakers) with other people in the Catalan-speaking area with whom they could communicate just as well in Spanish (570 million speakers)*.
The „small“ disadvantage would be that the parents or students would have to make a massive additional effort to be able to communicate with their French neighbours (321 million speakers), for example, or other people from large language families who are too often only monolingual.
After all, at this school in the Valencian town of Javea, English is taught alongside Spanish, but Spanish is not reflected in the official communication.
The demand of the organisation Hablamos Español is that the parents should decide on the language of instruction. In this case, 100% Spanish or 100% regional language would be just as possible as mixed Spanish/regional. Apart from the fact that with 100% regional language of instruction Spanish would be compulsory as an additional language, everyone should have the option of foreign language instruction for e.g. English, French etc.
No money for so many teachers?
Save on buying tanks! That would also be good against the big wars worldwide and the petty warfare in Spanish schools and with the Spanish administration.
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