The pencil case was closed, the satchel ready to be put away. Three months before the presidential election of April 10 and 24, Jean-Michel Blanquer was managing the end of his five-year term at the Ministry of National Education on a gentle slope. The former rector, member of the (restricted) circle of Elysée favorites, was promoting his record in the media and working on building his think tank, the Laboratoire de la République, intended to fuel Emmanuel’s campaign. Macron on secularism and to fight “wokism”, a current of fight against discrimination, which according to him fragments society. This was without counting the Omicron groundswell, which defies all the certainties accumulated over the past two years on the Covid-19 epidemic, and contributes to making its star pale.
Since the start of the January 3 school year, schools have been plunged into a mess that has put millions of students, parents and teachers under pressure. The images of endless queues in front of pharmacies and laboratories to have their child tested have been looping on television and on social networks.
In eight days, the government has already reviewed its health protocol three times. And the Minister of National Education is undergoing a surge of criticism among the most violent he has had to face since 2017. The teachers’ unions have called for a day of strike, Thursday, January 13, while the parents of students are invited by their representatives not to send their children to school on that day.
Faced with this bronca, unwelcome at the approach of the presidential election, the Prime Minister, Jean Castex, was forced to go to the front. It is he, and not Jean-Michel Blanquer, who went to the set of the 20 hours newspaper of France 2, Monday, to announce a “Simplification” of the protocol. From now on, there is no longer any need to go through the pharmacy box: three self-tests, each carried out two days apart, will be sufficient for students who have been in contact with a positive case for Covid-19 in their class. Eleven million self-test kits must be sent to pharmacies in order to respond to stockouts, said the head of government.
In addition, parents can finally wait until the end of the day before picking up their “contact case” child. And they will have only one certificate of honor to submit to certify that the latter does indeed present a negative test allowing him to return to class.
You have 68.71% of this article to read. The rest is for subscribers only.