Financial Times – Madrid sparks Catalan language debate

Spain’s government risked inflaming tensions with Catalonia when it said school students from the north-eastern region should be “Hispanicised” by bringing the curriculum under greater central control.

A lack of emphasis of Spanish language and history in Catalan schools had helped foster support for independence in the region, said José Ignacio Wert, Spain’s education minister, just six weeks before Spain’s richest region heads to the polls in what has been billed as a referendum on independence.

“Our interest is to Hispanicise Catalan students, so they feel as proud to be Spanish as they do to be Catalan,” Mr Wert said in response to a question in Spain’s parliament on Wednesday.

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