Expert: English has never been taught in Iranian primary schools
["other","Middle East"]

By CGTN's World Insight

“I should first of all clarify that English has never been taught in Iranian primary schools, and in the Iranian educational system teaching English starts at secondary schools,” explained Hamed Mousavi, professor of Political Science at the University of Tehran.
“The reason an Iranian official in the Education Ministry recently said English has been banned from primary schools is that some private primary schools have started to teach English and were getting extra money because of that. He was actually clarifying to say that this was not allowed essentially.”
Mousavi’s comments come after news that Iran had reportedly banned teaching English in primary schools, dismissing the subject as "cultural invasion."
He agrees that some people, especially in Iran, see this as a form of cultural imperialism by the United States.
“However, I have to point out that you would find a lot of Iranians, especially the young, are actually quite proficient in English, and there are many private institutions that only teach English.”
Iranian pupils on their way to school /VCG Photo

Iranian pupils on their way to school /VCG Photo

He believes that for youngsters in Iran, learning English is something that they want to do.
“I think one of the issues some conservative politicians in Iran have pointed out is, they want the educational system to give more options to students so that they can decide whether they want to learn English or whether they want to learn French, or Spanish or German… Right now in the Iranian system, you have to learn English, so you are not actually given much of an option,” said Mousavi.  
World Insight With Tian Wei is a 45-minutes global affairs and debate show on CGTN. It airs weekdays at 10:15 pm BJT(1415GMT) with rebroadcasts at 4:15 am BJT(20:15GMT).