Catalan wins. Major disobedience against Spanish law triggered

Catalan school and government have frontally rejected the imposition of the end of Catalan immersion and the schools have already warned they will disobbey any imposition from Spanish law in this respect. Disobedience has been encouraged by the platform, plataforma per la llengua, Òmnium Cultural, the Federation of Association of Mothers and Fathers of Students and the major teachers’ union, USTEC, amongst many others. The Facebook page setup to support disobedience has already more than 40000 likes in little more than one day and the hastags #jonoacato and #somescola reached were trending topics in Twitter on friday.

The Catalan Minister of Education, Irene Rigau, has said that “if she must leave politics because of the language issue, so be it” with regards to possible legal fines and penalties that would disqualify her from public service. Catalan society is with the government and expects it to defend the language to the last consequences.

The consensus about Catalan language immersion is absolute throughout society and a lawsuit made by 3 families cannot change the system of a whole country, especially if this law is imposed from the legal system of a foreign country.

Now we’ll have to see what excuse Madrid makes up to justify their backing off when they realise they can’t enforce it.

I personally know that my mother, who was a secondary school teacher, would have been horrified by this imposition and embarrassed, since she taught in Catalan language for 25 years and understood how important Catalan is as an integration tool in Catalonia. She was born is Spain and couldn’t learn Catalan in school because of Franco’s era ban on the language.

Madrid’s efforts to expel Catalonia from the Spanish State are accelerating. This has proven that Catalan society cannot be stopped if it acts united against aggression from Spain. Way to go.

Photo by Convergència Democràtica de Catalunya

Spain attacks Catalonia’s core, the language immersion

Spain gives Catalonia 2 months to dismantle the Catalan language immersion. As a consequence of last year’s Spanish Constitutional Ruling, which made 1 million Catalans take the streets in protest now the Spanish Judiciary system has given the Catalan Government 2 months to dismantle the Catalan immersion system and give Spanish the same weight as Catalan (Spanish is currently taught as a subject in Catalan public schools).

The immersion system has guaranteed during the last 30 years that the children who live in Catalonia finish their compulsory education being fluent in both Catalan and Spanish and has been praised internationally as a model of integration. Catalan is the language of Catalonia. Spanish media and Spanish speaking immigration (both from Spain and latin american countries) exert great pressure over Catalan and the Spanish Constitution theoretically should grant the language diversity protection.

But this not new, this is just yet another attack against Catalan language from Spain during the last 300 years. Not long ago it was banned during 40 years from public life during Franco’s dictatorship. This new initiative would have the results of creating two separated societies where the newcomers would not be able to speak the language of the country and would of course minoritize over time the usage of Catalan until making it residual.

Incidentally, it is completely impossible to find a school in the Spanish State outside of the Catalan speaking countries where Catalan education is an option. And Catalan is not an official language in Spain or in Europe, despite being with 10 million speakers the language number 13 in a European Union with 27 official languages.

Right now the internet is burstling with protests against this measure and calls to civil disobedience are made from all sectors of Catalan society and the hashtags #jonoacato and #somescola are trending topics both in Catalan and in the Spanish twitter rankings .

I am losing count of the primary and secondary teachers who have already already replied in twitter that they will not stop teaching in Catalan no matter what.

The Catalan government hasn’t yet officially replied to this.