Beijing: China is banning the informal education of Tibetan children living in China’s northwestern Qinghai province in order to weaken the native language. The authorities have close the classes in winter holiday outside school.
A notice regarding the ban was released in October to all districts in the province to block children from taking classes outside. The Qinghai province is historically a part of northeastern Tibet’s region of Amdo.
“No individual or organisation is allowed to hold informal classes or workshops to teach the Tibetan language during the winter holidays when the schools are closed,” Radio Free Asia (RFA) quoted a source as saying.
Further, the source said that teachers across the province have already been summoned to meetings held to inform them of the ban.
The violation of the government order will result in “serious legal consequences and punishment”, he said.
Stressing that this is an attempt to wipe out the Tibetan language, the source said that subjects like math and science are already being taught in Chinese in all the elementary schools, and except for formal classes in the Tibetan language itself, all other subjects will gradually be taught in Chinese too.
Authorities in China’s Qinghai have already banned monasteries from teaching language classes to young Tibetans during their holidays from school, the source said, adding, Tibetan private schools offering instruction in Tibetan have also been closed in Qinghai and in neighbouring Sichuan.
He emphasised that the move has forced students to go instead to government-run schools where they will be taught entirely in Chinese, according to RFA.