“Let’s mobilize to defend the vocational school!” », call teachers and 18 NUPES deputies

12:00 a.m., October 16, 2022

Here is their platform. “On October 18, let’s mobilize to defend the vocational school! The vocational high school is about to undergo one of the most important reforms of recent decades. A rare fact: the project has the singularity of being unanimously against it, among teachers and in their union representations, who are all calling for a strike on October 18.

Who cares about the vocational school apart from those who work there, those who study there?

No reform has provoked widespread mobilizations in public opinion. However, there would have been many reasons to be indignant. Let us mention one, and not the least, the drastic reduction (nearly 30%) in the number of hours devoted to general education: French, history-geography, mathematics, etc., in 2019. It is in indifference general therefore that the Blanquer ministry has shown all its contempt for this segment of the education system, and in general indifference even that his successor, Pap N’Diaye, is preparing to deal him a fatal blow.

Workers or students? You should know

If few care about it, it may be because they don’t know the vocational high school well; perhaps also because they struggle to consider it of equal dignity with the general high school, for which the slightest change in a school program makes the headlines: the drastic reductions in hours of French, history-geography and mathematics in 2019 did not have an echo even though they were the beginnings of the reform announced today.

Read our article – Recruitment, salaries, math… Pap Ndiaye’s inflammable construction sites at the Ministry of National Education

Let’s summarize the reform announced with great fanfare by Emmanuel Macron on September 13 at Eric Tabarly high school in Les Sables d’Olonnes. The tone was set by the attribution of a double supervision to the vocational high school: the Ministry of Education, and that of Labour. A project overseen by Secretary of State Carole Grandjean. Do we act that the 650,000 high school students in the vocational path would not be fully students and that the Ministry of Education would only be half responsible for them? Workers or students? You should know.

All this did not bode well and the content of the reform is up to the concerns. Here are the main points: priority given to learning; increase (by almost 50%) of the internship time, which induces a drop in the value of the students’ diplomas, making it impossible to continue their studies, a loss of qualifications which, until now, guaranteed them certain rights within the framework collective agreements; local revisions of training maps to adapt them to market demand, and empowerment of establishments (the great neoliberal creed!), whose boards of directors could be led by business leaders, so that the latter determine their needs.

Spending less time on the benches of the school, here is what shows the complete disinterest of the government for the general education of the pupils resulting from the popular categories. After all, what good is knowing the French Revolution or playing Molière when one is destined for a career as a worker?

It is true that in Macronie still operates ” the magic of the workshop where we cannot distinguish the frame from the worker Said Agnès Pannier-Runacher with glitter in her eyes on October 11, 2021. We doubt that the thousands of PLP teachers (vocational high school teachers) left on the floor will rave about such magic.

With the development of apprenticeship, the state sheds its educational responsibility by dropping it into the hands of employers.

Learning also carries its share of commonplaces. Isn’t it useful to place the students as close as possible to the life of the company, they who, it is said, “ are not made for studies »?

We are also led to believe that the apprenticeship contract would facilitate access to employment. This is only true if we forget the large number of young people who drop out before graduation, if we neglect that it discriminates against girls and young people from immigrant backgrounds or if we do not want see the reality of a few jobs in tension.

Above all, with the development of apprenticeship, the State is relieving itself of its educational responsibility by dropping it into the hands of employers.

This is a major break with a tradition inherited from the Enlightenment and the French Revolution: that of allowing, through state regulation, disinterested access to knowledge. What a regression! Would you like your professional destiny to be taken care of by Orange or Total?

Renunciation of the educational mission, and therefore emancipatory

To this, the government replies that it is a matter of adjusting the training of future professionals as best as possible to the local and immediate needs of the market. But would it be too much to ask not to professionally and henceforth geographically lock in the future of young people between 15 and 18? Still asking too much to pass on the culture of a profession that gives meaning to one’s work rather than training in the repetition of absurd tasks whose stakes are incomprehensible?

But we would still be very naive because, in Macronie, it is not at 15 that young people decide, it is already in college, at 12, with the ” future devices which prepare very early on a social sorting that will be presented as a choice of the students and their families.

What is being played out at the vocational school should alert us. It is a renunciation of its educational and therefore also emancipatory mission. Since 1985 and the establishment of the vocational baccalaureate, the latter had to contribute to the objective of school democratization, that is to say to allow students to pursue studies in higher education, and to progress in a world of work according to their desires and their stories, endowed with the rights associated with their qualifications. We will be told that it did not work well enough, it is true. But is that a good reason to change course? Can we condone the pacing of children from working classes subject to the goodwill of the bosses and the dogma of employability? The vocational high school could, on the contrary, become the major place for the development of training courses responding to the ecological needs of producing and consuming differently, to the social issues caused by the aging of the population or to support for the handicapped, to the needs of qualification linked to the requirements of reindustrialisation.

It is this project that we must carry out together.

We therefore hope for a strong mobilization this Tuesday, October 18, because there is still time to stop this demolition undertaking and to organize ourselves in defense of a public education service for all children.

Ségolène Amiot, deputy LFI-Nupes

Rodrigo Arenas deputy LFI-Nupes

Clémentine Autain, deputy LFI-Nupes

Élise Boscherel, CGT trade unionist, teacher

Matthieu Brabant, FERC-CGT national secretary

Cédric Caubère, Secretary General UD-CGT 31

Alexis Corbière, deputy LFI-Nupes, PLP Letters-history

Hendrik Davi, MP LFI-Nupes

Laurence De Cock, historian and teacher

Paul Devin, trade unionist

Dieynaba Diop, Regional Councilor IDF and PLP Letters-History

Iñaki Echaniz, PS-Nupes deputy

Elsa Faucillon, PCF-Nupes MP

Germain Filoche, Collective Our Public Services, PLP Letters-History

Djéhanne Gani, Generation.s Nupes education manager, teacher

Sigrid Gérardin, Secretary General of SNUEP-FSU

Ingrid Hayes, Lecturer in History at the University of Nanterre

Samy Joshua, Emeritus Professor of Education

Fatiha Keloua Hachi, PS-Nupes MP

Jérôme Legavre, deputy LFI- Nupes

Sarah Legrain, deputy LFI – NUPES (16th district of Paris), vice-president of the Cultural Affairs and Education Commission

Julie Mandelbaum, PLP Letters-History, trade unionist

Myriam Martin, former Occitanie regional councilor, PLP Lettres-Histoire

Philippe Meirieu, teacher

Ugo Palheta MCF in education sciences at the University of Lille

Francesca Pasquini, Ecologist MP-Nupes, EELV

Stéphane Peu, PCF-Nupes MP

Jean-Claude Raux, ecologist MP-NUPES, PLP Letters-English

Agathe Roby, historian at the University of Toulouse

Claudia Rouaux, PS-Nupes MP

Marine Roussillon, PCF, education manager

Sophie Taillé Polian, MP, VP of the environmental group-NUPES, Génération.s

Marine Tondelier, EELV Regional Councilor for Hauts de France

Yannick Trigance, Ile-de-France Regional Councilor

Aurélie Trouvou, deputy LFI-Nupes

Paul Vannier, deputy LFI-Nupes

Léo Walter, deputy LFI-Nupes

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“Let’s mobilize to defend the vocational school!” », call teachers and 18 NUPES deputies

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