Society 12/05/2022

Catalan Education Minister promises "instructions" for headteachers to protect them from High Court ruling

Cambray and President Aragonès meet with school representatives, who express concern about the ruling

2 min
The President of the Generalitat, Pere Aragonès, and the Minister of Education, meeting with the directors.

BarcelonaCatalan Education minister Josep Gonzàlez-Cambray has promised headteachers' representatives instructions on how to act before the Catalan High Court sentence fording the Generalitat to ensure 25% of classes are taught in Spanish across Catalonia. In a meeting led by president Pere Aragonès, the Government has listened to headteachers' requests. "We have asked for specific instructions to know how we should enforce the order and they have told us they will send them to us soon," ARA was told by one of the headteachers who attended the meeting.

The permanent board, formed by 24 representatives of all types of schools from across Catalonia told the Government it was "concerned" about the sentence. "The order says one more core subject must be taught in Spanish, but the new education law no longer speaks of core subjects and we need to know what we should do," this headteachers says. Precisely this Thursday ARA heard from three directors who were puzzled because they had no instructions from the department. According to a government press release, in view of the "concern" expressed by the directors, Aragonès has committed to "always be at their side and do everything necessary to protect schools, teachers and, particularly, headteachers".

Up until now, the only order that Cambray had given was "not to change anything", but these were statements to the press , not schools. These have demanded more certainty and in writing, aware of the consequences the failure to comply with a court ruling may have. Thus, this Thursday, in an interview with Tv3, the minister advanced that it was "very likely" schools would end up sending schools instructions because he believes it is the best way to "protect" directors. In spite of the fact that the Assembly for a Bilingual School has put headteachers in the spotlight and sent them an email containing the court order, the magistrates' ruling does not refer to teachers at any time and makes minister Cambray solely responsible. "I will do whatever it takes to protect headteachers," Cambray insisted during the interview. The minister will meet Som Escola platform tomorrow.

Now Cambray and the government's legal services are studying what "the best formula" is to guarantee this protection and, at the same time, to increase the use of Catalan. An appeal is also being prepared, although this would not delay compulsory enforcement, as ARA has explained and Cambray has admitted. In under fifteen working days, all schools will have to be teaching 25% in Spanish.

In addition, there is a third legal battle, which is preparing a decree to strengthen the Catalan school model and to give teachers "legal protection". It will be state the language to be used inside a school will have to take into account linguistic use inn the area and the new learning methodologies. On the other hand, the reform of the linguistic policy law seems far more unlikely, after JxCat announced a definitive withdrawal of its support for the reform

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