Linguistic model

Linguistic model

The Statute of Autonomy for the Basque Country establishes that Basque, the language of the Basque people, will have, as does Spanish, official language status in the Autonomous Community of the Basque Country, and that all inhabitants will have the right to know and use both languages.
The Basic Normalisation of the use of Basque Law 10/1982, of 24th November, sets out firm and efficient guidelines to channel and stimulate the correct use of Basque in education. To this end, article 15 of the aforementioned Law recognises equal rights of all students to receive an education in Basque and in Spanish at all the various levels or education.
The use of the official languages in non-university education will use as a reference the bilingual models of teaching A, B, and D described below. Model X includes students who currently do not study Basque. It is not a bilingual education model.

For Basic Education

  • Model A: All subjects – except Basque – will be taught in Spanish. Basque will be taught like any other subject, the students receiving the number of hours a week which are established by the Department of Education, Universities and Research. When students have acquired a good level in the use of Basque, then, during the higher levels Primary Education parts of other subjects may be taught in Basque.

  • Model B: Both Spanish and Basque will be used to teach other subjects. In principle, Spanish will be used for subjects such as reading, writing, and mathematics. Basque will be used for other subjects: plastic and dynamic experiences above all. Furthermore, Basque and Spanish will be taught weekly according to the number of hours stipulated by the Department of Education, Universities and Research..

  • Model D: All subjects - except Spanish language – will be taught in Basque, this also being an academic subject itself being taught weekly the number of hours stipulated by the Department of Education, Universities and Research. Spanish language will be taught from the beginning of the school age like any other school subject.

For Middle School


  • Model A: All subjects, except Basque Language and Literature and Modern Languages, are taught in the Spanish language. Basque will be treated like any other compulsory subject, being taught the number of hours established by the Department of Education, Universities and Research. With groups of students who have reached a good level of Basque some other subjects may be taught in this language.

  • Model D: All subjects, except Spanish Language, and Literature, and Modern Languages, are taught in Basque, which will also be taught in its own right, like Spanish, following the programmes and timetables established by the Department of Education, Universities and Research.

  • In Middle School the bilingual model (Model B) does not legally exist. However, there are in fact some groups of students who are taught some subjects in the Basque Language, this model, known as Model A strengthened, being comparable to the bilingual model (Model B). This comparison has been made for statistical purposes in order to standardise as far as possible the information from the bilingual education models.

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