Iran Outlaws English Classes In Primary Schools

Rob Shimshock | Education Reporter

Iran banned teaching English in the nation’s primary schools, terming the subject a “cultural invasion,” according to a Monday report.

The move, conducted by Mehdi Navid-Adham, Iran’s supreme education council secretary, mirrors the disdain for English expressed by Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, reported BBC.

“Teaching of foreign languages has not been recommended by any means,” said Navid-Adham to IRIB, an Iranian news outlet. He also termed primary school teaching of English before or after normal school hours a “violation.”

“This insistence on promoting the English language in our country is an unhealthy course of action,” said Khamenei in a 2016 speech, according to The Washington Post. “Of course, we should learn foreign languages, but foreign languages are not confined to the English language. The language of science is not only English. Why do they not specify other languages in school as language lessons? Why is there such an insistence?”

“We should know what kind of generation the other side wants to be built in the country and with what characteristics,” cautioned the supreme leader.

Iran’s edict will be inconsequential because middle-class families in the country use “independent language institutions” with higher quality than public schools, according to Rana Rahimpour, a BBC analyst.

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