Sun, Dec 16, 2018 - Page 1 News List

Textbooks cowritten with Chinese cause concern

By Chung Li-hua  /  Staff reporter

Legislators and educators have urged the Ministry of Education to tighten control over cross-strait educational interactions after China’s Fujian Normal University said it is working with a Taiwanese association to compile history textbooks for high-school students.

The university and Taiwan’s Chinese Classics Association last week presented their collaborative textbooks for high-school Chinese curricula at many Taiwanese schools, including Daren Girls’ Senior High School in Taipei, Dasi Senior High School in Taoyuan and Guoguang Laboratory School in Kaohsiung.

The two would start compiling another history textbook next month, university vice president Zheng Jiajian (鄭家建) told reporters in Taipei.

Zheng’s application to come to Taiwan said he wanted to attend a teaching forum, the National Immigration Agency said, adding that he might have broken the law if he is found to have introduced books.

The agency said that it would ask his inviter and the ministry to confirm his purpose for visiting.

The university and the association have been working on the textbook project for four-and-a-half years and adhere to the so-called “1992 consensus,” Chinese media reported.

The “1992 consensus,” a term former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) admitted making up in 2000, refers to a tacit understanding between the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese government that both sides of the Taiwan Strait acknowledge there is “one China,” with each side having its own interpretation of what “China” means.

The first and second volumes of their Chinese textbooks last year passed the National Academy for Education Research’s review, with more than 20 high schools adopting them.

Earlier this year, the team launched the third and fourth volumes, and teachers’ manuals.

The materials aim to propagate Chinese cultural heritage, Zheng said.

The ministry has been turning a blind eye to the matter, Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Huang Kuo-shu (黃國書) said.

Conveying a China-centric perspective, the materials are China’s tools for “brainwashing” Taiwanese and are a part of its “united front” tactics, Huang said, urging the ministry to better regulate educational cross-strait interactions.

The teaching materials are China’s “Trojan horses” to politically infiltrate Taiwanese campuses, National Dong Hwa University professor Shih Cheng-feng (施正鋒) said.

Authorities are unguarded against China’s propaganda tactics, even after many schools in the West have raised concerns about the threat posed by China’s Confucius Institutes, Shih added.

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