“Around 2,000 students” have not resumed school and are currently staying at home because they have returned from an area affected by the coronavirus, said the Minister of Education on Friday, who did not rule out the closure schools in the coming weeks.
Only a third of France returned to school after the February holidays – Ile-de-France and Occitania, so “of course this figure will increase next week when a second third will return from holidays and when we have made the new assessments of the evolution of the disease, “said Jean-Michel Blanquer in the morning on Europe 1.
He recognized that these measures were not binding: “all of this rests on the good citizenship of all of us, the sense of discernment”.
Mr. Blanquer also assured that a distance-learning device could be deployed on a large scale if necessary: ”We have been preparing for this for several weeks with the CNED”. First “with French students in China” then “we have extended this system for those who are forced to stay at home””.
This system allows “from the large section of kindergarten to the Terminale to have lessons and even homework to be done remotely,” he added, adding that “7 million connections” could take place at the same time. time.
Asked about the need to close schools, the minister insisted on the need for “discernment”: “we don’t rush things”, “we are at a stage where the right measure is to ask people to stay at home “.
But in the evening, interviewed on BFM-TV, he acknowledged that the measures taken in the coming days could “go to a closed establishment, or several closed, in a given area”, after a case by case analysis by the Regional Health Authority (ARS).
– “Improvise” –
In the Oise, at Jean-de-La-Fontaine college in Crepy-en-Valois, where the professor who died from coronavirus infection taught, lessons will resume on Thursday and not Monday, after the winter holiday.
There is also the question of payment for days off for parents who have to keep their children at home. “It was planned with the health insurance funds,” replied Mr. Blanquer. “The problem has already started to arise for families in Courbevoie”, where dozens of pupils returning from a stay in Italy have been invited to stay at home as a precaution.
The first federation of parents of FCPE students regretted Friday that “the actors in the field are forced to fend for themselves, to improvise” and said they expected from the government “a detailed action plan that allows parents to see more clear over the coming weeks. “
The federation would like in particular that all children and educational staff who have been in risk areas be tested and those clear instructions be given on the financial support of parents who must keep their children at home.
The other federation of parents of pupils, Peep, said for its part to await clarification on “the continuity of teaching in the event of the development of contamination”.
These organizations were received in the afternoon by the Minister, as were the union organizations.
Among the many points raised, the situation of school trips planned in the affected areas. “We reminded the minister that in the absence of a regulatory text, the establishments could not operate the insurance in the event of cancellation,” said Pascal Bollore, deputy secretary-general of the SNPDEN (union of heads of establishments).