the Ministry of Education reopens the teacher training project

by time news

2023-12-10 06:00:07
A classroom at the Louis-Pergaud elementary school in Mulhouse (Haut-Rhin), September 4, 2023. SEBASTIEN BOZON / AFP

How can we resolve the serious teacher recruitment crisis that France has been experiencing for several years? For the Ministry of National Education, part of the answer lies in the positioning of competitions and the initial training of teachers. While his administration was once again forced to extend the registration period for competitions by one month, until December 7, due to a lack of sufficient candidates, Gabriel Attal promised announcements in early 2024 on “entry into the profession”.

Since September, the office of the Minister of National Education has initiated consultations with trade union organizations on the attractiveness of the teaching profession, during which various recruitment reform scenarios were presented. The route favored by Rue de Grenelle consists of moving the first and second degree exams. Since 2022, they have been accessible after a bac +5. The project is to bring them back at the end of license 3, then to train the winners under trainee status for two years.

This hypothesis looks like an admission of failure concerning the last competition reform, led by the former minister, Jean-Michel Blanquer, during Emmanuel Macron’s first five-year term. The decision to require a master 2 level to take the tests has accentuated the erosion of registrations observed for twenty years and led to a collapse in applications, which are still very far from their pre-2022 level.

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Gabriel Attal has also several times deplored a second year of the master’s degree in teaching, education and training (MEEF) “exhausting” for students, who must now simultaneously prepare for the competitive examination, validate the master’s degree, write a dissertation as well as carry out internships, or even a work-study program. For a year already, calls to review the terms of recruitment have been accumulating, among parliamentarians from the majority as well as from the opposition – the deputy (Les Républicains) from Rhône Alexandre Portier, for example, tabled two bills to move the competitive examination for bac +3.

Improving initial teacher training

By considering repositioning the competitions earlier, the ministry hopes “expand the pool of candidates”. However, there is no question of renouncing the requirement to validate a bac +5 to be a teacher: obtaining the master 2 would be compulsory at the end of the two years of training after the competition. The winners, who would carry out observation courses in the first year then be in class responsibility part-time in the second, would also be paid for the two years – at least 1,770 euros gross per month are envisaged.

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