The former leader of the Balearics, Jose Ramon Bauza, seems intent on re-opening old wounds. Bauza, who was ejected from office two years ago, has been running for the leadership of the centre-right Partido Popular. He was back on his soap box calling for local schools to teach in three languages - English, Spanish and Catalan. In fact, he allegedly feels so strongly about the issue he gave his campaign speech in three languages. One of the reasons why Bauza lost the election was over his three-language teaching plan which led to one of the largest protest marches ever seen in Palma.

Bauza, who lost the leadership vote, failed in his attempt to introduce the language system because local schools were not equipped for the task. In other words there were not enough English teachers and therefore the system was doomed to failure from the start. Now, I think everyone would be in favour of more English being taught in local schools but providing there are enough teachers to do the job. Perhaps it would be an idea to introduce a school curriculum in the islands which takes into account the special needs of the islands: tourism equals English, and culture and heritage equals Catalan/Majorcan. But this is not something which can be done overnight. The foundations need to be in place before you start building the roof. Bauza will ride off into the sunset again but he is not backing down. Like his political career, it’s back to the drawing board.

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