PROTESTS against the ‘Multilingualism Law’ that will mandate the use of Valenciano in all Valencian Community schools have been organised across the Costa Blanca for this Saturday, January 18.
Non-profit organisation Hablamos Español has organised the manifestations taking place in Elche, Villajoyosa, Alicante, Elda and with a main protest in Orihuela.
The organisation believes mandatory lessons in Valenciano will ‘discriminate’ against Castellano-speaking families. The Vega Baja region of Alicante has been chosen as the epicentre of the protests, as Castellano is the predominant mother tongue.
“This is a great opportunity for each of us to demonstrate that we do not accept immersions or impositions, and that we should be able to choose the language in which our children study,” a statement from Hablamos Español said.
“We do not want the political interests to meddle in the education of our children.”
The protests centre around the Ley de Plurilingüismo 4/2018, which will come into effect in the 2020/2021 teaching year.
Schools across the Valencian Community are however being asked to submit prospective timetables that comply with the law in the next few months.
The law mandates at least 25% of classes MUST be in Valenciano, with at least 25% in Castellano and between 10-25% in English.
Schools particularly in the Vega Baja, where Castellano is the mother tongue, are particularly at risk of having students with no knowledge of Valenciano suddenly studying chemistry, maths or geography in a foreign tongue.
“The law doesn’t mean only giving classes in Valenciano, but also examinations in the language,” the statement added.
The statement says the Law of Multilingualism will be imposed ‘in one go’ across the six years of ESO [GCSE equivalent], Bachillerato [A Level equivalent] and Formación Profesional [vocational training].