While some politicians and scholars are seeking more Arabization in the education system, the education minister gave statements about the “excellent cooperation” between Morocco and France.
Rabat – After stating that English would not be able to replace French in Moroccan schools any time soon, Morocco’s Minister of Education Said Amzazi has spoken of the “excellent” cooperation between Morocco and France in the field of education.
The minister made the comment while speaking about the International Baccalaureate Option (OIB), which he said reflects their “excellent” cooperation.
Amzazi said that the excellence of the Rabat-Paris cooperation was the “fertile ground on which the successful OIB experience that emerged in the kingdom was developed.”
The minister made his remarks during a meeting under the theme “Arabic, French: a shared ambition.”
The meeting comes on the heel of a national debate over the language of instruction of scientific subjects in Moroccan schools. Currently, schools teach in standard Arabic, but Amzazi supports a bill that would allow schools to teach scientific subjects in French.
Some scholars and politicians oppose the bill and are in support of the Arabization of the education system.
The event was organized by the Royal Moroccan Academy in partnership with the French embassy in Rabat on the 30th anniversary of OIB.
“The introduction of the OIB option in schools under the authority of the Agency for French Education Abroad (AEFE), an experience that began in Morocco, to our great pride, constitutes today a true path of excellence and a lever for student success at national and international levels,” said Amzazi.
He added that Moroccans enrolled in OIB courses can acquire “not only perfect bilingualism but also knowledge and attachment to their Moroccan culture.”
Languages are full of culture, identity
Amzazi commented that everyone is “aware that languages are not just tools for communication or learning, but that they are full of culture, identity and history that make them all the more endearing.”
The minister also spoke of how the Ministry of Education provides AEFE schools with more than 200 teachers of the Arabic language.
Minister Amzazi is known for his defense of the proposed education bill, Law 51.17, which would reintroduce the French language into the education system.
In January, the minister said that English cannot replace French in Moroccan schools for at least 10 years. Amzazi explained that Morocco does not have trained teachers in English for the language to be able to replace French.