“Mr. Minister of Education, you have to make six key commitments to save the school”

We need to end methodological controversies without a scientific foundation and partisan opposition without a political foundation. We must forget slogans, watch words and anathemas and favor the effectiveness of the method, clear and attentive support for each student and the pedagogical knowledge of the teachers. The school must transcend sterile opposition: syllabic approach against global approach, universalism against relativism, spirituality against secularism, discovery against memorization, use of rules against questioning, frontal pedagogy against diversity, competition against of egalitarianism, conformism versus critical thinking and finally theoretical training versus class practice.

“Stop from the usual arrangements above that follow every ministerial assignment. »

It is time to ask ourselves the only question that matters: “Do we accept that a student’s failure is programmed from the age of 5 because he was born in a peripheral district, because he lives in a rural wilderness or because he belongs to a disadvantaged family?» If we want to end these questionable fights, which undermine the important values ​​of the school, we must, without delay, make six commitments that will change them and violate the usual above arrangements that follow each ministerial assignment.

Controlled decentralization and pedagogical diversity

The school deserves a serious decentralization that will unleash strengths and talents, invite consideration of local specifics and give more responsibility to establishments. But at the same time the whole territory must ensure respect for the values ​​of the republic and guarantee the sharing of established knowledge.

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Desirable school decentralization will impose in return for eliminating the status of out-of-contract schools that risk opening the way to all sectarian extremes, allowing all vain beliefs and rejection of the idea itself. of the universality of values ​​and knowledge. , while maintaining private schools under contract, is obliged to strictly respect the country’s educational programs and procedures.

Pedagogical diversity guarantees equitable education

If we do not want the school to continue to be a machine of social reproduction, widening inequality, it must be provided with ways to build an overall educational diversity that will allow every student to be included as accurately as possible. as possible. .

“A system of evaluation and pedagogical differentiation that will enable management with a view to crossing different levels”

In the current state of the education system, the correct response to programmed failure in some students is neither a complacent transition from one level to another, nor blind and ineffective repetition. The first response only postponed a failure to prove more pain; the second leads to embarrassing paths of relegation and drop out. It is therefore necessary to establish a process that links explicit evaluation and relevant progress to stop uniform teaching, ignoring the specific needs of students and ignoring the intellectual particularities of each. one of them. The only effective solution is to create, throughout the course, a system of assessment and pedagogical diversity that can possibly be managed with a vision of crossing the different levels that the most vulnerable students have. much difficulty in passing.

In fact in these critical times we “lose” more than 25% of students. So there is a need to install a “personalized diagnosis” system from February onwards, opening up a relevant four-month recovery period that will guarantee a successful transition to the next level.

Rehabilitation of the professional sector

Today the most vulnerable children in school, deprived of essential intellectual and linguistic tools and lost the desire to learn, are offered professional guidance by default. Everything happens as manual activities are the right consequence or the right punishment for school failure. The contempt that is often shown for manual work, as well as the disregard shown for a linguistic and cultural requirement that is often considered obsolete makes students in vocational streams second -class students. .

“Choosing a professional sector is then the right result of a clearly proven balance between reflection and action”

If we want decades of neglect and ridicule not to turn professional paths into paths of relegation, it is necessary to be out of college (and in all colleges), as much importance is given to technical and technological activities such as so-called general disciplines; in other words, we need to create a college that is definitely unique but plural where all students will be judged to have as much competence and requirement for their ability to understand a text or solve a problem as their talent in building an electrical circuit, molding something or creating a website.

On this basis, choosing a professional sector can be a real choice, which is to say the right result with a clearly proven balance between reflection and action; every student who thus learns, out of college, to leave a trace of the world controlled by his intellect. And in vocational high schools, it’s not “cheesy” to think or embarrassing to act.

Teacher training that combines knowledge and practice

The responsibility for the training of teachers has been handed over, for over forty years, to the power of the universities that serve it very well (but use it to increase their positions!). Today, the most unequal masters, often unrelated to basic education, provide access to a much less valuable competition.

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Baccalaureate graduates with no general culture are now trained by university students who know nothing about nursery and elementary teaching. The result: school teachers who are not proficient in the content (literature, grammar, math, history) of what they are supposed to teach and do not know how to teach. In these temples, elevated to the glory of a strict horizontal pedagogy, experienced field trainers, with experience in classes, are reduced to performing inferior tasks; their voices have no weight in the essential orientations of a formation entirely under the power of academics.

It is therefore necessary to completely rethink the training of teachers by selecting multidisciplinary knowledge that is useful for teaching and by acquiring the field of pedagogical practices necessary for conducting a class. This balance can only be achieved through a courageous decision that ultimately frees the training of masters from the yoke of the University.

A balanced pedagogy of understanding: guarantees of freedom of thought

It is not because students are trained to work hard to translate a text that, for all that, they dominate its meaning; not because they know to recite it by heart that they are able to analyze and critique it. Nor is it because they line up a few shouts of words that they can express a strict and personal thought. Weakness in analytical and critical capacities, complacency for a bloodless and estimated language, lowering cultural ambitions are the result of hypocrisy and ridicule that risk sealing the loss of language and the mind. about young Frenchmen.

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It is therefore necessary to place the desire to understand accurately and the ability to understand accurately at the appropriate center of all learning in the discipline. Students must come to college to be able to read a literature text such as a mathematics statement or a science text with accuracy and fluency. This should impose schools on an integrated pedagogy of reading, balancing code and meaning and aimed at understanding texts in all disciplines from kindergarten to secondary school.

A pedagogy that cultivates the scientific spirit

Students should be invited to observation and analysis activities where everyone has to compare their assumptions to others, where everyone accepts criticism, and therefore personal questioning. In this way they will be taught to rely only on the weight of their reasoning and not on the smallness of the things that are before them. This is what they will learn then to be wary of those who want to strike them with ready thoughts presented as evidence.

“The metamorphosis of a school, able to withstand the harsh call of madness”

This struggle to make students become intellectual warriors of resistance is especially necessary because we live in a time where the sudden image is carried by so -called social networks, marked by self -proclaimed idols and thus being able to impose the “law of evidence by. brutally rejecting any attempt to criticize. If we are not careful,” the weight of the words of the Republican school risks losing the war on terror. in photographs. By returning the intellectual and linguistic weapons to the image, the school will in fact cease to elevate its pupils into this heaven which shines with all true values, which the sun shines on. Good, Truth, Justice and beauty.

In conclusion, believing that, in the field of education in particular, it is possible to immediately rule out change worse than folly, this is a mistake. The metamorphosis of a school, capable of resisting the harsh call of folly, ignorance and hatred, cannot be judged; it will be built, with the patience, will and courage of many generations. But in this world, where only image matters, where you see nothing more than your Facebook page or your Twitter account, it is more than ever our duty to demand that a minister have the wisdom and humility to want. children, no matter what their children. social origin, to benefit from the consequences of his decisions if he himself is undoubtedly no longer responsible.

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