As all the students prepare to return to class this Monday, principals and principals want to meet the Minister of Education to explain their demands. In the first stage, a bill concerning school directors is to be discussed in the Assembly on Wednesday.
School heads can no longer bear it, and are preparing to make it known. The SNPDEN-Unsa, majority union among the management staff of colleges and high schools, is expected to send a letter to the Minister of Education on Monday asking for an emergency hearing. “The profession is today in a state of fatigue, demotivation, exasperation and even anger rarely if ever reached,” denounces Philippe Vincent, its secretary general.
Social movements – against pension reform, high school or bac – then management of the consequences of the health crisis … Providers and principals have been on the front lines for months. And, says their union, burnout is now accompanied by a “majority feeling of mistrust” vis-à-vis the institution. Colleagues would criticize him for “injunctive, coercive, even vexatious modes of governance”. Hence this warning addressed to Jean-Michel Blanquer : if nothing is done, social conflicts are to be feared.
The difficulties do not date from the health crisis
Proof? Some were said to be ready to demonstrate. But two weeks before the holidays and at the time of the compulsory return to schools, the initiative seemed unwelcome. Whatever. To make their demands heard – higher wages, working conditions and working hours, rejection of time-consuming and unnecessary surveys, etc. – school heads would consider other means of action: publication of a call, online petition, day died in parallel with the hearing with the Minister, boycotted administrative inquiries and a total break from July 14 to August 24 … for “restful vacations”.
In the first stage, school directors could also be heard. Again, the difficulties do not date from the health crisis. Last September, the suicide of Christine Renon, a colleague from Pantin who had denounced in a letter her working conditions, had already highlighted the malaise of the profession. Following the tragedy, the ministry had launched a broad consultation to establish an inventory. Nearly 30,000 directors had responded and pointed out the needs: reduction of administrative tasks, human aid, longer discharge time for those who still manage a class…
Interesting tracks but
The subject should re-emerge this week: a bill aiming to create a “school principal function” will pass in front of the deputies on Wednesday. On the menu: the creation of a “functional job”, a total discharge when the school has more than 8 classes, an increase in the management allowance, a reduction in administrative burdens, specific training …
Teacher unions welcome interesting leads. But call for changes. The SE-UNSA points in particular to “the lack of stability in the financing of the measures, ensured by an additional tax on tobacco” and considers that “functional employment is not the right formula”. For the SNuipp-FSU, there is no question that this new function gives hierarchical authority over the teachers: “School principals do not ask to be the heads of their colleagues”. There may well be some rallies on the day of Assembly discussions.