Despite ongoing criticism from mostly conservative circles, Morocco’s education minister is adamant that the new education bill will help raise standards and deliver social equality.
Rabat – Morocco’s Education Minister is optimistic about the prospects of the series of new reforms initiated to improve performance at Moroccan schools,. The minister says that the broader goal is to boost teaching quality and equal opportunity.
According to Minister Said Amzazi, the North African country is poised to be a respected participant in the worldwide scramble for state-of-the art innovation and scientific research. But to do so, he said, there is a need to invest in “quality education for all.”
Amzazi’s comments came on Thursday, October 17, as he presented, the accompanying vision of the recently passed education bill, Law 51.1, at an event in Fez. In his presentation, the Moroccan minister invoked his usual sticking points.
He said that education is the lifeblood of the country’s new development model and that it is necessary to boost education performance and teaching quality for Morocco to reach the development level it aspires to.
Even as he spoke in the wake of a government reshuffle that has not settled doubts on the delivery ability of the country’s governing class, Amzazi was reassuring as far as the education sector is concerned. He repeatedly emphasized that social integration and inclusiveness are an essential part of the new educational reforms.
In accordance with the King’s call for the governing class to work towards the emergence of a “new Morocco,” where social inequalities are considerably reduced, he argued, the reforms in the education sector mostly have to do with investing in the making of a new “republican” and well-performing “school for all.” Social equity and equal opportunity, he said, constitute the driving spirit of the new education bill.
Amzazi’s insistence on equality and quality education, worldwide competitiveness, and equal opportunity is reminiscent of the counterargument he has traditionally offered to critics of the new education bill. As the new law entails the adoption of French, rather than Arabic, as the language of instruction for scientific subjects, conservative Moroccans have said the bill constitutes an assault on Moroccan identity and pride.
In response, Amzazi notably said in an interview in April that the widespread adoption of Frecnch would end Morocco’s “linguistic fracture” and make Moroccan students more competitive on the world scene.