Update on Spanish becoming compulsory in Brazilian high schools starting this coming year

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Here's a quick update in Portuguese on Brazil's implementation of a law that requires all high schools to teach Spanish this coming year. The idea is a good one as Brazilians already have a fantastic passive understanding of Spanish, and it doesn't take much work to turn it into a very valuable skill. It may seem a bit odd to some to have people learning a language so similar to their mother tongue, but there really is a big difference between simply passively understanding a language and using it correctly. I have a fairly good passive understanding of Romanian for example, but can't even properly write or speak a single sentence in the language.

Here's most of the article.

The president of the National Council of Secretaries of Education, Yvelise Freitas de Souza Arco-Verde, said this Friday that the compulsory teaching of Spanish in high schools will enable an amplification of the cultural aspects of the students and would promote cultural integration among the peoples of Latin America.

According to Law 11.161/2005, the public school system is required to implement the teaching of Spanish in all high schools beginning the coming year.

Quote: "We have 11 states that border on Spanish-speaking countries, and this integration will facilitate a better relationship with them."

 According to the president of the organization, some states are doing a better job carrying out the law than others. She pointed out that the support of the Ministry of Education is needed for teacher training and the creation of textbooks aimed at teaching the Spanish language.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Okay, so all high schools will be required to teach Spanish.

But does that mean all students will be required to learn Spanish?

I'm guessing not.

Are most Brazilian students monolingual? Would the majority of them be learning Spanish *instead* of English, *in addition* to English, or simply *in the absence* of English? Seems like it would be more economically beneficial to learn English, geography be damned. After all, the collective GDP of the entire Spanish-speaking world, Spain included, does not even add up to that of the US, let alone including the UK, Canada, and Australia to that figure.

Although, I do realize that Spanish would take much less effort.

Antonielly said...

All students will be required to learn both English and Spanish.

However, in practice, they will leave high school without speaking any of them, since the flawed teaching method widespread in Brazilian public schools uses Portuguese as the language of instruction. Therefore, there is no immersion, even for the most interested students.

jimmy said...

By constitutional determination regarding the educational system, the aforementioned legislation still applies as long as it does not go against the Constitution. This ambiguity is a consequence of the absence of a new Bases and Guidelines Law and characterizes a transition phase until the new law is finally elaborated and enacted. The bill has already been submitted to congress.

jimmy
info@ibowtech.com
http://www.sangambayard-c-m.com

Anonymous said...

Okay, so all high schools will be required to teach Spanish.

But does that mean all students will be required to learn Spanish?

I'm guessing not.

Are most Brazilian students monolingual? Would the majority of them be learning Spanish *instead* of English, *in addition* to English, or simply *in the absence* of English? Seems like it would be more economically beneficial to learn English, geography be damned. After all, the collective GDP of the entire Spanish-speaking world, Spain included, does not even add up to that of the US, let alone including the UK, Canada, and Australia to that figure.

Although, I do realize that Spanish would take much less effort.

Antonielly said...

All students will be required to learn both English and Spanish.

However, in practice, they will leave high school without speaking any of them, since the flawed teaching method widespread in Brazilian public schools uses Portuguese as the language of instruction. Therefore, there is no immersion, even for the most interested students.

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