“This trend is getting worse and worse.”

23 May 2022 17:24

Teacher competitions are not over this year. Only 816 candidates are eligible for External Cloaks in Mathematics for 1,035 positions, compared to 1,706 eligible last year. Same observation for German teachers, 83 of them suitable for 215 positions, half as much as last year. This situation, which is especially evident in certain disciplines, also primarily affects very special academies such as the Ile-de-France. Versailles has 484 people eligible for 1,430 school teacher positions. As the new Minister of Education Pap Ndiaye is newly appointed, the issue of salary increase for the profession comes to the fore, and the debate on the attractiveness of the profession begins. Sophie Vénétitay, general secretary of the SNES-FSU, the main association for colleges and high schools, returns to the challenges of recruiting and appointing the new minister for the JDD.

Also read – Islamo-leftism, wokism…: Will Minister of Education Pap Ndiaye be anti-Blanquer?

How would you explain the decline in the number of candidates for the professor position?
Not having enough contenders is not new, but this trend is getting worse and is disastrous. Before writing, the profession lost 200 places in mathematics, while last year that figure was “only” 100, after the verbal. This is explained by the fact that the profession is no longer attractive enough.

According to the Ministry of Education, since the new reform in the teacher recruitment competition, this decline, which no longer has to go through in master 1 but in master 2, will be cyclical above all else. Is this a sound argument?
It’s an explanation, but it’s not the only explanation. The trend has been around for several years, from 2018 to 2021, more than 2,800 positions were lost in competitions, so this really predates this reform. We are placing more emphasis on the salary issue, which in this hiring crisis weighs much more than this new reform of competition.

What could be ways to prevent this phenomenon?
The first trace is the salary increase. The salaries of the teachers hired in Bac+5 are insufficient. According to a recent Senate report, teachers have lost between 15% and 25% of their salary in 20 years. Upgrade is both a measure of purchasing power and leverage to recruit tomorrow’s teachers. This is a collective challenge that we must face. The entry requirements for the profession should also be studied. Candidates who will take the competition will be full-time starting next year and start trading in classes of 30 or 35, which can be intimidating. In addition to being poorly charged, they are launched into the deep end very quickly. Starting under these conditions is problematic.

Emmanuel Macron assured in France Inter’s publications on April 22 that he will reassess teachers’ salaries so that there is no salary below 2,000 euros. Do you believe this announcement and is it sufficient?
We’re pretty skeptical because the campaign team denied the numbers a few hours later. Rejecting this so quickly shows that this is not a stable measure. And to quote a former minister, when there is a blur there is a wolf. Moreover, are we talking gross or net in this 2.000 Euro announcement? It’s not the same thing. We want these 2,000 Euros to be clear, we have to be very clear at this point.

The 2022 edition of the school climate barometer shows that violence at school is starting to rise again and returning to pre-Covid levels. Is this a phenomenon observed by your union, and if so, how do you deal with it?
Since we have lived through two years of Covid, we should not only focus on this increase, but also look at the pre-epidemic figures in a way that is comparable to today’s. We cannot deny that there is violence at school, but it should not be exaggerated. A question arises: How do we deal with this reality? When there is violence at school, it should be handled as such. We have to get out of the “no wave” strategy that is partially implemented in national education. On a regular basis, when we raise such issues at the rectorate or departmental level, we get a not-so-serious response. When it comes to school violence, the dust is often swept under the rug. In recent years, an awareness has started, but for this, sufficient inspectors are needed and also sanctions are taken and applied.

Also read – School violence: projects that remain unresolved

It was a surprise that Pap Ndiaye was appointed Minister of Education to replace Jean-Michel Blanquer. What can it change?
If we dwell on the symbol this appointment represents, it’s all about the break with Jean-Michel Blanquer. But National Education is not done with symbol strokes, so measures will be necessary very quickly from the next academic year to recruit teachers and reassess their salaries. Emmanuel Macron wanted to capture the image of a 180-degree turn, but here are the questions that concern us. And Pap Ndiaye will need to research this quickly.

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