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Saudi Arabia Combats Radical Ideology by Reforming National Curriculum

Saudi Arabia Combats Radical Ideology by Reforming National Curriculum

Thursday, 22 March, 2018 - 09:00
Saudi Education Minister Ahmed bin Mohammed al-Issa. (SPA)

Saudi Arabia is saving no effort in combating extremist ideologies, especially those spread by the Muslim Brotherhood. The Kingdom announced on Wednesday that it was taking new measures to address shortcomings of some educational curricula.

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman told CBS television in an interview Sunday that elements of the Muslim Brotherhood, designated as a "terror group" by the Kingdom, had infiltrated Saudi schools.

The government will "fight extremist ideologies by reviewing school curricula and books to ensure they are free of the banned Muslim Brotherhood's agenda", Saudi Education Minister Ahmed bin Mohammed al-Issa said in a statement.

It also seeks to "ban books attributed to the Muslim Brotherhood from all schools and universities and remove all those who sympathize with the group", he added.

Former Shura Council member, academic scholar Dr. Mohammed Al-Mafrah explained that the Crown Prince's speech confirms that the current phase is focused on reviewing curricula and developing new policies that serve the Kingdom’s Vision 2030.

All programs will be put under revision along with the objectives they relay and all content aimed attracting some ideological schools will be purged, he told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“Time has proven the greed of these political groups and their eagerness to spread their poison and feed hatred in society,” he added.

He said that the government will aim to uproot radical tendencies and set the Kingdom’s society on the road to moderation, away from political rivalries and ideological extremism.

Moreover, the Education Ministry emphasized that university administrators, ministry officials and education monitors throughout the Kingdom have been warned against rolling back in fighting this ideology. It encouraged them instead to exert every effort possible to clean up the education system from radicalism.

The ministry has been working on a number of measures that promote moderation, including reformulating curricula and developing textbooks and ridding them of any skewed thought. The ministry had already banned all Muslim Brotherhood related books.

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