The law confirming respect for republican principles now makes school attendance compulsory for all children. In the name of the fight against radical Islam, announced the president of the republic in Les Mureaux his desire to strictly limit homeschooling.
Therefore, from the beginning of the 2022 school year, homeschooling becomes humiliating. Parents who wish to homeschool will need to obtain prior permission, not just submit a declaration. Only four reasons can justify homeschooling: the health or disability of the child; the intensive practice of sports or artistic activities; the family’s homelessness or a child-specific situation motivating the educational project. UA decree of the State Council must specify the conditions for issuing the permit.
Reserve for interpretation
When looking at the text, senators fiercely fought the measure. In vain they wanted to preserve the home education declaration regime by increasing control. The senatorial right appealed to the Constitutional Council, but the elders approved on Friday, August 13, the tightening of conditions for home education.
However, the Constitutional Council places a reservation for interpretation, specifying that “the regulatory authorities, under the control of the judge, will determine the procedures for issuing a permit for family education and the competent administrative authorities will base their decision solely on the criteria established by law, excluding any discrimination of any kind”.
“This is a decline in educational freedom,” reacted LR Senator Max Brisson. A teacher by education, he says he understands and respects the decision of the Constitutional Council, but fears the effect of this measure:
“I know from experience that the administration will take a very restrictive view of homeschooling.”
For Max Brisson, “the administration will necessarily be judge and party” insofar as “those who organize a system are asked not to determine whether a child can attend it or not.” The senator from Pyrénées-Atlantiques remains attached to public schools and rightly believes that the state of this institution has led to “this decline”.
“In some territories, parents are leaving public schools”
“Homeschooling has withstood all the school wars because public school has never doubted itself. Today we are in a period of retreat, this government has difficulties with diversity, this is a phenomenon that we also observe on the topic of regional languages”, explains Max Brisson.
The learning conditions in some public institutions also justify home schooling, he said. “In some territories, parents are leaving public schools. Today, many parents are worried about this reform,” he says.
The fight against “separatism” or sectarian deviations cannot justify this measure. “During the review of the text, the government failed to prove the link between separatism and home education,” Max Brisson also supports.
The law, consolidating respect for republican principles, also attacked private non-charter schools. In the Senate, centrist Senator Francoise Gatel had already initiated text retained by the government to better control these establishments. This text creates here a new system for the administrative closure of schools that have not been declared or have not removed the deficiencies identified by the administration. Prefects will have the option to oppose the opening of non-treaty schools supported by a “foreign state hostile to the Republic”. Now the law must be passed.