More than 300 students from Bacău County study entirely in Hungarian, in state education at preschool, primary, secondary and vocational levels, according to data provided by the Bacău County School Inspectorate.
Budapest supports the Hungarianization of Moldovan Catholics PHOTO AMCM
It is about 275 students at the “Dani Gergely” Secondary School in Ghimeș and 42 students at the Făget Technological High School. Ghimeș-Făget commune is located on the border of Bacău and Harghita counties, and Hungarians are the majority (53%).
Here, 6 teachers teach preschool education, 9 in primary education, 2 Hungarian language and literature, 2 English, 2 mathematics, 2 history and geography, 2 religion, 2 physical education, 2 terror agriculture, one practical agriculture and one, music education.
At the Bacău County School Inspectorate, professors Margareta Nistor and Marieta Hârțescu are responsible for education in the language of national minorities.
However, the official data contradicts the enthusiasm of the Hungarian Prime Minister's representative, Katalin Szili, who last year stated that the development of the Hungarian language education network in the communities inhabited by the Hungarians in Bacău County is going strong.
In Bacău county there are numerous communities of Roman Catholics who identify themselves as Căngăi, an identity contested by both the Romanian and Hungarian authorities. At the 2021 Census, the population that declared itself Hungarian in Bacău County increased by 7% compared to the 2011 Census, a sign that certain educational and ideological policies of the Hungarian Government are yielding results.
The Association of Hungarians from Moldova, the spearhead of Budapest's policies towards Catholics in the area
In the last three decades, an important role in affirming the Hungarian identity of the Romanians in Moldova was played by the Association of Hungarian Romanians in Moldova (AMCM), which benefited from funding from the Government of Hungary.
Besides, the neighboring country has stipulated in the Constitution the obligation to support the Hungarians outside the borders, even if they are not Hungarians, as is the case of the Hungarians.
AMCM was involved in the renovation of kindergartens, schools and community centers, with the support of the Hungarian Government.
Moreover, the same association is actively involved for bachelors who want to become citizens of Hungary.
“Consular Day at the Hungarian House in Bacău. Tomorrow, February 6, between 11:00-15:00, the delegation of the Hungarian Consulate in Miercurea Ciuc will be present in Bacău, to receive the following requests: submission of a file for obtaining Hungarian citizenship, submission of an application for the issuance of a passport, submission of an application for the issuance birth certificate, submission of applications under the child aid program “Köldökzsinor” reads a recent AMCM post.
“In 34 localities in the region, approximately 55,000 Hungarian speakers live or who consider themselves Hungarian, and in 22 localities, approximately 2,200 children also benefit from one meal a day, respectively learn in Hungarian and develop their continuous knowledge about Hungarian culture and traditions”
– reported Katalin Szili, quoted by G4Media.
The statements of the Hungarian official are however contradicted by the Bacău authorities, who state that there are no private forms of education in the language of national minorities and no forms of (positive) discrimination
“There are no other forms or units of private education at the level of Bacău county for teaching in the language of national minorities and/or training students in this language. There are no private collaborations in the pre-university education units in the county to ensure certain benefits to students who belong to national minorities, likely to lead to discrimination against other students who do not belong to these minorities.”it is stated in the answer signed by general inspector Anca Agarmin, from the Bacău County School Inspectorate, sent to Adevărul newspaper.
Manual for the Hungarianization of Romanian names
For more than a century, Hungary has been pursuing a policy of Hungarianizing Romanian names and designations, which overlapped with the religious policy of attracting, especially during the Austro-Hungarian Empire, to Catholicism or the Greek-Catholic confession.
In 1898, the work of Simon Telekes appeared: “How to Hungarianize the surname”. Ioan Furdui becomes Fúrdui Ianoş, Furdui Nicolae – Fúrdui Miklos, and Avram Iancu – Iank Abraham.
Even the names of the localities no longer had anything in common with the Romanian identity: Bacău is Bako, Comănești is Comanfalva, and Pustiana was Pusztina.