In a move to further establish the Islamic caliphate, ISIS militants have imposed the mandatory removal of all Syriac and Christian teachings from school curricula.
Educational institutes across Mosul and Nineveh Plain bearing Christian names, such as the St Thomas Christian school, will also be renamed under the new policy issued by the extremist group on September 5.
The statement instructs schools to “teach and serve the Muslims in order to improve the people of the Islamic state in the fields of all religious and other sciences.”
“This announcement is binding,” the group warned. “Anyone who acts against it will face punishment.”
According to Agenzia Fides, the abolition of the teachings is part of the groups’ plan to propagate its jihadist ideology among younger generations.
However, numerous families have reportedly withheld sending their children to school since the new teaching year began last Monday out of fear and uncertainty.
“What’s important to us now is that the children continue receiving knowledge correctly, even if they lose a whole academic year and an official certification,” a Mosul resident told the AP.
The Ministry of Education in Iraq introduced the Syriac language and teaching of Christianity to public schools last year in a bid to preserve the culture and languages of pre-existing indigenous Christian groups.
Such communities faced a drastic fall in numbers due to a surge of migrants after the fall of the country’s Baath Party.