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Schools: provision of 5 million FFP2 masks and “thousands” of replacements announced by the government

Emergency measures for the educational environment. The Minister of Education Jean-Michel Blanquer announced, Thursday, January 13, the provision of “5 million FFP2 masks” for kindergarten teachers on request and “several thousand” replacements “to deal with the crisis. “, following a meeting with the teachers’ unions. The evaluations for the CP classes scheduled for January will be “postponed to a deadline which remains to be defined”, he indicated, after a day of massive strike by National Education staff.

“We have heard the expectation in terms of FFP2 masks. We recalled that the High Council for Public Security did not specifically recommend their development, but we wished with the Prime Minister that it would be possible all the same, in particular for certain personnel. I am thinking of teachers in kindergarten, who have children without masks in front of them, teachers who intervene in front of students with disabilities, those we call AESH (Accompanying students with disabilities, editor’s note)”, indicated Mr. Blanquer, after this meeting at the Ministry of National Education with the unions and Prime Minister Jean Castex. The Minister of Health, Olivier Véran, participated in it by videoconference because positive for Covid.

“To respond to needs”

“It is 5 million FFP2 masks which will thus be distributed in the school system to meet the needs”, added Mr. Blanquer, while the government indicated that surgical masks would be distributed from the beginning of next week for education personnel.

Regarding the replacements of absent teachers, “I announced that we would recruit 3,300 more contract workers, that we are going to have recourse to the additional lists, that is to say therefore to people who are on the competition lists and who thus enter the function, especially in primary school”, he said, responding to a request made by the unions.

“We are also going to recruit what are called educational assistants (AED, editor’s note) and educational support staff for school principals,” he added. Finally, “in terms of evaluation or exams”, the “mid-CP” evaluations which were to start next week will be “postponed to a deadline which remains to be defined”, he said.

Regarding the baccalaureate specialty exams, which normally take place in March as part of the new reform, “we must take into account the fact that daily life is not easy at the moment”, and “make an analysis again with the representative organizations” to “see if it is appropriate to have these events postponed from March to June”, he said.

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