Let’s be ambitious for France’s regional languages
In the current debate in the French media about junior state school reform, the discussion essentially revolves around the teaching of ancient Greek, Latin and German, which is more or less endangered but never about the precarious position of so-called regional languages in state schools. They are likely to be completely sidelined because of the reform.
The Occitan Nation Party would like to restate its proposal : the French state education system should be regionalized as in the German « Länder ».
This means that the new French regions created by the very questionable territorial reform would be responsible not just for the school premises but would be granted the necessary means to hire teachers and partly adapt the national curriculum to offer pupils, whatever the form, courses in the Occitan language and culture.
This would also apply to France’s other regional languages in Brittany, Dutch-speaking Flanders, Alsace, the Basque country, Northern Catalonia and Corsica.
In the curriculum, it should be stated that the teaching of History should no longer fail to mention the history of the vanquished and deal with the military conquests that allowed the French kingdom, then the French Republic to expand.
It should also highlight the attempt by the state education system to eradicate France’s regional languages, particularly with the passing of the Jules Ferry laws.
Considering that this ambitious proposal stands no chance of being accepted by the current government, it will have to be promoted on the streets on Saturday 24th October during the big demonstration in favour of the Occitan language in Montpellier.
The Occitan Nation Party will be there and will see to it.
23rd May, 2015