Teaching English to be nixed from public school curriculum throughout Iran

By The Free Iranian Staff


Fifty-seven members of the Islamic parliament (Majles), are endorsing a draft law that if passed will restrict the teaching of English in public schools in Iran. The law allows private institutions under the supervision of the Ministry of Education to teach English.

The lawmakers submitted the proposal in Majles, citing Khamenei’s remarks from three years ago.


Majles Iran


In May 2016, in a meeting with teachers and educators, Ali Khamenei criticized young Iranians whom he called “nouveau riche punks” and ordered a reform in the “standard of assimilation” in Iran. He claimed that the “abominable promotion” of the English language, had made for an atmosphere of “tolerance for the repugnant and untoward” and was the cause for many “social damages” occurring in the country. He even complained that teaching English was spreading even “into daycare” institutions.

The draft law also forbids employing English teachers by the ministry and requires universities to sign agreements of cooperation with countries whose languages are offered in courses to students. The plan’s objective is vague.

In remote and deprived areas where there are no open educational establishments and the academic provisions in all approved languages, are provided in collaboration with one of the universities designing the project. But given the overwhelming demand by students for one or two languages, only students in the theoretical fields can apply.

These issues were raised in the Islamic Parliament when a number of experts called the plan unethical and negligent. They believe that teaching English in schools will lead to privatization and therefore, the corruption of scholastic system, which is contrary to Article 30 of the Khomeinist regime’s own constitution.

Mehdi Navid-Adham, secretary of the Higher Education and Academic Council, commented by saying: ” The Ministry of Education is not aware of the plan and we do not know exactly what the members of Parliament are thinking. In many cities, especially in the deprived provinces, we do not have [private of open] language institutes; this must be clarified.”

While the children of many Khomeinist regime politicians go abroad for higher education, in some cases fully funded by the government, many poor students from rural areas are deprived and their opportunities are ever decreasing as a result of the whims of the Islamic authorities, which are then passed into random mandates.

The names of the 57 signatories are as follows: 

  1.   Naghavi-Hosseini
  2.   Karimi-Ghodoosi
  3.   Nowruzi 
  4.   Zulnouri
  5.   Ghazipour
  6.   Maazani
  7.   Negahban-Eslami
  8.   Banaei
  9.   Azadikhaah
  10.   Massoudi
  11.   Ebadi
  12.   Fereydoon-Ahmadi
  13.   Shioyari
  14.   Asghar-Salimi
  15.   Nazar-Afzali
  16.   Torki
  17.   Akbari 
  18.   Nouri
  19.   Alireza-Salimi
  20.   Abdollahi
  21.   Sharafi
  22.   Hosseini-Kia
  23.   Farhangi
  24.   Abtahi
  25.   Hemmati
  26.   Pour-Mokhtar
  27.   Messri
  28.   Kowlivand
  29.   Gilani
  30.   Mohammadian
  31.   Kazemzadeh
  32.   Safari
  33.   Nanva-Kenari
  34.   Ali-AkbarKarimi
  35.   Mirzadeh
  36.   Torbatinezhad
  37.   Homayoun-Hashemi
  38.   Hosseini-Shahroudi
  39.   Ranjbarzadeh
  40.   Falahati
  41.   Haydari
  42.   Maghsoodi
  43.   Mousavi-Laregani
  44.   Kabiri
  45.   Hosseini-Kia
  46.   Lahooti
  47.   Barzegar-Kolshani
  48.   Soroush
  49.   Pourbafrani
  50.   Babaie-Saleh
  51.   Abu-Torabi
  52.   Malekshahi-Rad
  53.   Kamalipour
  54.   Vahdati-Helan
  55.   Papizadeh-Palengan
  56.   Saw’edi
  57.   Anaraki-Mohammadi


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