They were exasperated by the waltz of health protocols linked to Covid-19. Teachers and other National Education staff went on massive strike on Thursday and demonstrated to demand progress from the government, which promised them FFP2 masks and replacements.
At the end of this day of strike, the teacher unions were received by Prime Minister Jean Castex. After 3h30 of a meeting in which the Minister of Health Olivier Véran also participated by videoconference and the Minister of Education Jean-Michel Blanquer, the latter announced the setting provision of “5 million FFP2 masks” for kindergarten teachers on request, and the distribution of surgical masks from the beginning of next week for education staff.
He also promised “several thousand” replacements “to deal with the crisis”, with the recruitment of “3,300 more contract workers” and the use of additional lists, that is to say candidates who have had the competition but have not been recruited, a long-standing request from the unions.
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The evaluations of “mid-CP” postponed
Faced with the disruption caused by the health crisis, “mid-CP” evaluations, which were to start next week, will be “postponed to a deadline which remains to be defined”.
As for the baccalaureate specialty exams, which normally take place in March, the minister indicated that he was going to “make an analysis again with the representative organizations” to “see if it is appropriate to have a postponement of these exams from March to June.
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“We have made concrete progress. Now, actions must follow,” Guislaine David, general secretary of Snuipp-FSU, the first primary school union, told Agence France Presse after the meeting. “It does not answer everything but we see that we did not strike for nothing,” she added.
“The tone has changed, it is the result of the strong mobilization of the day”, also welcomed Sophie Vénétitay, general secretary of Snes-FSU, the first secondary union. “We will judge on the spot”.
“We have more solid answers, notched by the Prime Minister”, added Stéphane Crochet, secretary general of SE-Unsa, while the holding of bimonthly meetings with the trade unions was also decided on Thursday.
Nearly 78,000 people demonstrated
The tension had risen before this day of mobilization, with a Minister of Education once a good student of the government and today in turmoil.
Nearly 78,000 people (77,500) demonstrated in France on Thursday, including 8,200 in Paris, according to the Interior Ministry, at the call of all the National Education unions, who denounced “an indescribable mess” due to health protocols.
Nearly 38.5% of teachers went on strike in nursery and elementary schools, according to the Ministry of Education, and 75% according to SNUipp-FSU, who announced one in two schools closed and evoked “a historic mobilization”. In colleges and high schools, 23.7% of teachers were mobilized, according to the ministry. The Snes-FSU advanced the figure of 62% of strikers.
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