Emmanuel Macron in Marseille: the “start-up nation” even in schools

Visiting this Thursday, June 2nd, in the 10th arrondissement of Marseillethe President of the Republic, accompanied by the new Minister of National Education Pap Ndiaye and the Mayor of Marseille Benoît Payan, made several announcements about “the school of the future”ambition whose main lines were outlined in his speech of Marseille in style in September 2021 (see the speech in the source document) and which has since been tested in 59 schools, out of 469 in Marseille. This system involves substantial changes for the schools in question: not only are school heads able to participate in the recruitment of teaching teams, but schools are strongly encouraged to develop innovative projects, with additional funding as a result – per hour, it is 2.5 million euros divided between schools according to projects.

Nine months later, the first assessment for the Head of State, and it is Menpenti school which was chosen as an example: winner of the design competition launched following the presidential announcements to schools in Marseille, in October 2021, the management of the establishment has been in place since February 2022 a math lab which aims to improve the level of students through games and digital tools and which was presented this Thursday to the President of the Republic and the Minister. During a roundtable with professors, Emmanuel Macron confirmed his desire to generalize this approach “in the next few months, in the fall. »

The surroundings of the Menpenti school before the president’s arrival (credit: MG / Gomet’)

“Restoring meaning to the teaching profession”

Objective: to give more freedom to the educational world and “restoring meaning to the teaching profession”, as Emmanuel Macron says. “This transformation will allow us to have happier children and teachers, whose profession is more recognized and better paid, and freer school heads” explains Emmanuel Macron.

This decision to generalize this operation, however, fuels the fears of unions, already contradicting especially the hypothesis of a recruitment by the managers of the establishment. In our columns, the Secretary General of the SNUipp-FSU of Bouches-du-Rhône thus denounced the “crop risk” this method (see our article). This Thursday, June 2, several unions also challenged the City Hall’s ban on strikes in front of the school. An FO activist denounces this to the microphone of the BFM Marseille Provence “a Trojan horse to destroy teachers’ civil servant status. »

“There are red lines: it is the school of the Republic, the equality of all schools”

Benoît Payan, Mayor of Marseille

A concern shared by the mayor of marseille Benoit Payanwho told Emmanuel Macron during his visit: “ there are red lines: it is the school of the Republic, the equality of all schools “, he reacted. Grateful for the president’s interest in Marseille’s schools, he makes no secret of his opposition to this method of recruitment. Upon leaving the school, the Head of State was challenged by journalists on this specific point: “ we will never get the heads of establishments to make their own transfer window […]. We want to give the possibility for the recruited teacher to share this projectt”, he defended, while qualifying his speeches: “ let’s assume that in some places it will work wonderfully, in others it will be more complicated, you will need to readjust. The answer is not monolithic. First there will be a national time and then a local time. The Head of State defends his vision of freedom of initiative for schools, and of choosing their collaborators who are coherent with the educational project carried out in each of the establishments.

Other announcements were made in parallel with the school of the future at the end of this visit: on the one hand, the return of the math option in first place since the beginning of the school year of September, but also that of thirty minutes of mandatory sport a day for elementary school students.

School, a campaign argument as elections approach?

In the ranks of the opposition, this coming is also criticized, but for a completely different reason: in a press release, the Federation of Republicans of Bouches-du-Rhône denounces “a masked electoral campaign contrary to the republican spirit. » Stephane Le Rudulierfederation president, also criticizes him for showing “with a minister adept of wokism (a concept defined by Larousse as an ideology centered on issues of equality, justice and the defense of minorities, sometimes perceived as an attack on republican universalism, editor’s note)openly communal and hostile to law enforcement […] to seduce a Melenchonist electorate. »

National Education Minister Pap Ndiaye in front of the Menpenti school in Marseille (10th) (credit: MG/Gomet’)

on the side of new popular ecological and social union (NUPES)the reaction didn’t take long either: “Marseille is not a laboratory for Emmanuel Macron’s commodified fantasy. Here as elsewhere, we need more teachers, less busy classes, priority education facilities, schools and remuneration worthy of the name. tweet like this Manuel Bompard, candidate (LFI) in the 4th district of Bouches-du-Rhône. It must be said that this visit takes place just ten days before the first round of legislative elections, on June 12.

During the visit to the school, Emmanuel Macron, in turn, praised his minister: “When I chose to nominate Pap Ndiaye, I chose to nominate a man who above all for his life, his career, says what I believe in the Republic school.” The interested party, discreet throughout the visit, in turn underlined “the importance of the experience carried out in Marseille for the Ministry of National Education. »

Source document: the Marseille speech given by Emmanuel Macron in September 2021

Useful links :

> Emmanuel Macron and Pap Ndiaye visit the educational laboratory in Marseille
> Our news about Marseille in general

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