The Senate of the Pompeu Fabra University of Barcelona (UPF) has approved a motion that prohibits the use of Spanish in its internal and external communications and obliges all the organs of the university center to express themselves exclusively in Catalan. The text, approved this Tuesday while pro-independence students occupied one of the UPF campuses, includes that "additionally" English may also be used, as it is the "lingua franca of the Academy".
With 28 votes in favour, 27 against and 13 abstentions from the faculty representatives, from now on, UPF prohibits its "competent bodies" from using Spanish, the official language throughout Spain and co-official in Catalonia, along with Catalan. and the Aranese. This is stated in one of the three motions approved this week at the Senate meeting and consulted by ABC.
In addition, in another statement, UPF supports 100% linguistic immersion in Catalan, a model whose application has been declared illegal by all the courts of Justice.
The motion that refers to the exclusive use of Catalan has four points and points out that the Senate, "recognizing the role of the university in the normalization of Catalan", urges "the competent bodies" to adopt a series of measures. The first: «Make exclusive use of Catalan in internal communications and publications on the institutional social networks of the University and of the UPF Group as a whole»; and "additionally, from English as the lingua franca of the Academy."
The second measure that UPF, under the mandate of the rector Oriol Amat, professor of Economics and former regional deputy of Junts pel Sí, will take into account, from now on, refers to the "assessment criteria of calls for grants for associations", which will incorporate "points for the use of Catalan and/or Aranese in the activities subject to the subsidy", and will also take into account "the promotion and normalization of Catalan and/or Aranese in the natural areas of action of the associations.
Likewise, the university will extend "direct communication to the university community and, if applicable, the offer, on Catalan courses aimed at improving the linguistic competence in Catalan of students who enter the university without sufficient skill due to of the deficiencies of the vehicularity of Catalan in the educational system». And, finally, it will organize "training sessions on Catalan terminology in each subject".
In the same session of the Senate, it was approved (by 53 votes in favor, 4 against and 4 abstentions) to defend "the methodology" known as linguistic immersion, which in Catalonia is applied with 100% of the classes only in one of the two official languages of the region and that all the courts have ruled as an illegal system, by not respecting official bilingualism or linguistic conjunction, which is the system chosen by the autonomous legislators, according to the Constitution and the Statute.
However, despite the fact that the pedagogical model is not applied anywhere in Europe as it is in Catalonia, the Senate considers, in the approved declaration, that "the methodology" is "accredited worldwide by the academic community as one of the most effective for the preservation of languages threatened by the hegemony of the dominant languages. And it has allowed, according to the statement, that students enrolled in Catalonia have "the stipulated knowledge of the second foreign language and the prescribed domain of the official language of the State."
For this reason, the Senate states that Catalan needs to be used "one hundred percent by the educational community, not only in all subjects -except linguistics- but also in activities outside the classroom and in all interpersonal uses between teachers and students" and qualifies as "interference by the Judiciary" the decision of the Superior Court of Justice of Catalonia to order the Generalitat to adjust the school model in linguistic matters to the legality by introducing 25% of classes in Spanish and a subject stem or analogous in this language.