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00:00:00
>> The few schools Islamic State didn't destroy around their former stronghold of Raqqa are buzzing for the first time in years. When the militants ruled, children were only offered weapons training or taught extremist thought in mosques. However, there's a new conflict looming, and it's playing out in the classroom.
00:00:21
As kids head back to school, a debate over the curriculum hints at the ethnic tensions expected to follow. Here's Reuters' John Davidson.>> We're at this school in a village outside Raqqa, which is being used as a registration center for hundreds of teachers who have signed up to teach for the new academic year.
00:00:38
>> The teachers from this village are mainly Arab. But the Syrian Democratic forces who control the area are dominated by the Kurdish YPG. What is taught in areas under their control is one of the many questions over how predominantly Arab parts of northern Syria will be run as they come into the Kurdish fold.
00:00:59
One thing Arab and Kurdish teachers agree on is erasing Assad's influence.>> Teachers this year will actually be teaching what is essentially a new curriculum, in this area which is controlled by the Syrian democratic forces which is a US backed alliance which is fighting Islamic state out of Raqqa.
00:01:15
The new curriculum will use the same materials that we used on the president's Bashir Assad's government before the war here with one key omission. They will erase the political teachings of Assad's bath party in history and geography books for example.>> The immediate introduction of Kurdish lessons is also being floated by an SDF official.
00:01:36
Introducing the language worries local officials in mostly Arab Raqqa, who say consultations would be needed. Syria's president has vowed to take back all of the country. In a recent speech, he reiterated Syria's Arab identity. On the ground, there's a risk of ethnic tension, as Kurdish influence expands in Arab areas.