Education minister slammed by subcommittee over plans to make native languages compulsory 本土語文改必選? 課綱委員嗆教長

Wed, Jan 01, 2014 - Page 11

Members of the Ministry of Education’s Syllabus Research Subcommittee are lambasting Education Minister Chiang Wei-ling for the first time ever because he insists on making the nation’s native languages compulsory instead of elective for all junior high school students. Despite this, during a question-and-answer session in the legislature last week, Chiang resolutely said that native languages would be made part of the compulsory curriculum for junior high school students.

In October last year, Chiang promised the legislature that native languages would be switched from the elective curriculum to required curriculum for junior high school students. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chen Ting-fei last week submitted to the legislature a record of the subcommittee’s meeting regarding the revised education curriculum for the 12-year compulsory national education program at the ministry on Nov. 11 last year, pointing out that the subcommittees for junior and elementary school proposed at the meeting that a final decision should not be made before legislative discussions are finished. The subcommittes also expressed to the minister strict opposition to his plan.

Chiang has reiterated that he is determined to make native languages compulsory. He says that he respects the opinions of the subcommittee, but that suggestions from the subcommittee must all go through the Curriculum Committee, which he heads. Chiang says that he will communicate as best he can in order to finally carry out his promises.

Chen says that the subcommittee wants to downgrade native languages to local languages and abolish all of the rules regarding junior high school electives. The National Academy for Educational Research has rejected Chen’s request to let the public know who exactly is trying to suppress Taiwan’s native languages by publicly releasing the names of the subcommittee members.

Ho Sin-han, director of Chung Shan Medical University’s School of Taiwanese Languages, says that making native languages mandatory in the junior high school curriculum is a way of showing respect toward indigenous cultures and preserving them. The subcommittee was hired by the ministry, Ho says, adding that using their expert status to provoke the minister is basically the same as employees being hired to manage their employer.

National Academy for Educational Research President Ko Hwa-wei says that the subcommittee is made up of people with various backgrounds, including academics, experts, teachers and representatives of various groups, which means they have a diversity of opinions. Ko hopes that the subcommittee can respect the process and adhere to the system, and denies that the subcommittee is attacking the minister. Syllabus research is still being conducted, and there are no plans to reclassify native languages as local languages, or abolish junior high school native language courses, Ko says.

(Liberty Times, Translated by Kyle Jeffcoat)

為了國中本土語文是否由「選修」改為「必選」課,教育部長蔣偉寧破天荒被教育部聘請的課綱研修小組委員們「嗆聲抗議」!但蔣偉寧上週在立法院答詢時仍堅定表示,國中的本土語文課將改成必選。

蔣偉寧去年十月間在立院允諾,將把國中本土語文由現行選修課程改成必選,但民進黨立委陳亭妃上週出示教育部十二年國教課程總綱研修小組去年十一月十一日會議紀錄,她指出,國中分組及國小分組會議提出「不宜在法定討論程序尚未完成前,做成決議」,甚至向部長「提出嚴正抗議」。

蔣偉寧則再次保證會努力將本土語文列國中必選,他表示,尊重課綱委員意見,但課綱研修小組意見仍要送到由他主持的課程審議會,他會盡力溝通,以落實允諾。

陳亭妃質疑,課綱研修小組不僅擬把本土語言降格為鄉土語言,據聞還要把國中目前的選修規定完全刪除。她要求國教院應該公布課綱研修委員名單,讓社會公評誰在打壓本土語文,但國教院不願意公布。

中山醫學大學台灣語文學系主任何信翰表示,國中本土語文改必選是對本土文化的尊重和保存,課綱研修委員原是教育部聘請,卻藉口專業反過來嗆部長,根本是「頭家請『辛勞』,『辛勞』反過來管頭家。」

國教院院長柯華葳表示,課綱小組邀集學者專家、現場教師、團體代表等各界人士組成,本來就有多元意見,期待課綱研修能尊重程序、依循機制,絕非嗆部長;課綱研修仍在進行中,目前絕無將「本土語言」改成「鄉土語言」,也未做出「全部刪除國中本土語文」的結論。

(自由時報記者林曉雲)