Minister quits over teaching of Romanian in minority schools

Minister quits over teaching of Romanian in minority schools

BUCHAREST - Associated Press
Minister quits over teaching of Romanian in minority schools

Romania’s education minister has resigned over a political dispute involving the teaching of the Romanian language in schools serving the country’s ethnic Hungarian minority.

Valentin Popa told the Mediafax news agency on Thursday he disagreed with a demand by the party that represents the interests of Romania’s 1.3 million Hungarians to allow Hungarian-speaking teachers to keep teaching Romanian.

The Union of Democratic Hungarians made the demand in response to a new rule introduced in August that allowed only teachers trained to teach Romanian to instruct ethnic Hungarian students in the language.

The leader of Romanian’s ruling Social Democratic Party, Liviu Dragnea, declined to back Popa after the Hungarian party’s chairman threatened to pull the party’s support over the teaching issue.

Some schools serving Romania’s ethnic minorities teach in the minority language and also are required to teach Romanian.

Romania, Hungary, minority rights