Published 14 February 2021 by LED’A
10 hours of debate and 400 amendements later, the Republic en Marche (Republic on the Move) decided to restrict home education with Article 21. The wisdom of the senate now has the stage.
THE DAY when the Head of State launched a phone platform (call 3928), to enable victims of discrimination to expose cases to the authorities, the government spokesperson on the bill intended to “reinforce republican principles” Anne Brugnera, appears in Le Monde to once again stigmatise parents who have chosen home education.
In passing, with a wet finger in the wind, she estimates between “2,000 to 3,000 the number of children in a separatist situation”. A figure from Home Intelligence, right next to the Barbouze Group dealing with ghosts of the Republic or savage children? Even better, it is an “ex-tra-po-la-tion” she unashamedly confides to the daily newspaper.
Therefore, making the legal choice of a constitutional freedom enshrined in law since Jules Ferry, is for this parliamentary member for the Rhône, a form of separatism. With the good faith which is apparently the measure of the gravediggers of home education, she amalgamates education outside of school and withdrawal from society: “Withdrawing your child from school and from society is a form of separatism” is the title of her article.
It is certainly the new punch-line for a political executive who has never had any arguments other than their allegiance to Emmanuel Macron who declared a little too quickly, in his speech des Mureaux on 2 October 2020, his intention to ban home education.
The truth is, the government’s arguments are as poor as the impact study they produced for the Council of State when proposing the “separatism” law. Meanwhile the opinion of the sentinels of public freedoms are red in the face at Article 21, the Human Rights League, the Defender of Rights, National Consultative Commission of Human Rights (CNCDH), and now one year from legistation, it starts to become embarrassing, even for the ranks of the LREM.
De Rugy Annoyed by the Militant Mobilisation of Home Educators
Still you have to please the Prince. This was undoubtedly the intention of François de Rugy when he spoke during the session on the 11 February 2021, to invite parliamentarians to be more diligent to resolve the fate of home educated children. “62,000 pupils out of 12 million (…) a day in a very small part (…) let’s keep a sense of measure” invited the president of the special committee of the Assembly. To specify his annoyance at the mobilisation of home educating families and their effective relays: “it is the Republic which sets the framework, not the parents who set the framework for the Republic”. An expert opinion from a former President of the Assembly who has been well reprimanded.
For the deputy Di Filippo: “We will end up with the gas chamber”
This martial statement at the very least betrays the feverishness of the political executive and of the majority which has suffered more than 400 amendments, in particular on the very controversial Article 21. The incantations of Soldier Blanquer did not convince anyone in parliament. Similarly when he said that Article 21 “is a text of protection and freedom” or when he took up his slogan: “School is good for children”. Instead of pulling out their handkerchiefs and drying a tear, parliamentarians opposed to this liberticidal law have warned him on several occasions. Like the deputy Di Filippo: “We will end up with the gas chamber”. The elected representative of Moselle reminded him “of his duty of control” as the Senate had done before him on 18 June 2020, after Blanquer himself had admitted under oath to carry out on average only 70% of home education controls. Denouncing “a measure to the detriment of honest families” the Lorrain LR member specifically warned him: “the sooner an error is corrected, the easier it is to correct”. Cunning Blanquer pretends to drop some ballast by proposing an amendment that would make the application of Article 21 variable. Families already practicing home education during the 2021-2022 school year would not be concerned by a system of authorisation before the beginning of the 2024-2025 school year … if they satisfy the education inspection of course.
The carrot and the stick or how to keep families at bay with the “deemed insufficient” weapon of control. This is often the case with the National Education Department: coercion and manipulation.
Now more than ever, let’s stay MOBILISED!
Les Enfants D’Abord
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