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Egypt to teach French as a compulsory language in public schools

March 14, 2023 at 1:11 pm

Egyptian girls at school in Cairo, Egypt. [Lynsey Addario/Getty Images Reportage]

Egypt’s Ministry of Education has announced plans to start teaching the French language as a compulsory subject in public schools, starting from the academic year 2024-2025.

According to a report by Egypt Independent, the ministry said in a statement that the move was part of wider educational reforms which will come into effect in the next academic year, for the benefit of nearly three  million students enrolled in public schools.

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Education Minister Reda Hegazy said that the move is also part of Cairo’s ambitions to strengthen bilateral ties with France across various fields, in particular transferring French expertise and technology to enhance Egypt’s development. Earlier this month, the ministry unveiled plans to establish 100 Egyptian-German schools across the country, having successfully done so with Egyptian-Japanese schools.

The move to teach French as a compulsory language in Egypt comes after former North African French colony, Algeria announced plans in June of last year to introduce English lessons in primary schools, with President Abdelmadjid Tebboune describing the French language as a “spoil of war”, noting that “English is an international language.”

Last year, it was reported that Egypt launched a pilot programme to begin teaching the Mandarin Chinese language during the 2022/2023 academic year across middle schools.

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