the SNUipp-FSU fears “a crack in the school”, due to lack of staff

“We fear a crack in the school simply because we will no longer have enough staff to welcome the children”, the co-secretary-general and spokesman of the SNUipp-FSU union Guislaine David warned on Thursday, January 6 on franceinfo, before the national education unions are received via videoconference in the afternoon by their responsible minister Jean-Michel Blanquer. The SNUipp-FSU will ask him to return to the rule that a class closes as soon as a case of Covid-19 is discovered among the students.

franceinfo: Jean-Michel Blanquer says that currently 7% of teachers are absent, mainly due to Covid-19, and that this is likely to rise to 15%. Do you have the same numbers?

We don’t have the numbers because the ministry doesn’t report them to us, but we know we have a lot of teachers who have been absent since the beginning of the school year. When a teacher is absent and not replaced, because there are no more substitutes and because the children cannot be stirred, the class is closed. What is surprising in the figures that Jean-Michel Blanquer discloses is that we do not know what he is relying on to give this percentage of 15%.

“I think he has a crystal ball to lead the ministry because you don’t know who will be absent in the next few days and who will be sick.”

Guislaine David, spokesperson for the SNUipp-FSU teachers’ union

at franceinfo

These are cases of Covid-19, sick people who can’t go to school. We also have people who are contact cases and need to be tested. They may have a day off because sometimes it takes time to get tested in pharmacies or labs.

Many parents of students say that it is currently the “mess” in the schools. Do you share the same observation?

Yes, there is some clutter. What we are experiencing in schools is a gasworks as we have to report cases of Covid-19 to parents, encourage them to take tests, bring them back with negative tests, get them back and then these affidavits on D+2 and D+4, stating that the children have completed self-tests. It is also necessary to manage the absences of teachers and those of non-teaching staff in the municipalities. Because in the schools we also have Atsem, cleaning staff, staff who manage the canteen during lunch. It’s starting to get complicated. We fear a crack in the school, simply because we no longer have enough staff to welcome the children. Schools open without staff.

What are you going to say to Jean-Michel Blanquer at your meeting next Thursday?

We will ask him to return to the rule according to which we close the class for seven days as soon as there is a positive case. The children are in solitary confinement for seven days. This is also what happens to children in colleges who are not vaccinated. They are placed in solitary confinement for seven days whenever they have contact. We ask to come back to this rule to avoid contamination on D+3, D+5. We really need to go back to a stricter rule. It would prevent contamination. That is, the 30,000 cases we can have in a day, we might not have had them had we closed the schools. There we have classes that sometimes work with four or five students until they come back with a negative test.

“Is it good for our classes to have four or five students a day, then 10, then maybe 15?”

Guislaine David, spokesperson for the SNUipp-FSU teachers’ union

at franceinfo

We really have a very chaotic operation. We also ask for protection for teachers as we are still not protected by surgical masks.

Jean-Michel Blanquer says he has distributed 160 million masks since the start of the pandemic. This makes, in theory, 150 masks per teacher. Is it right ?

Yes, but the masks distributed by National Education are not surgical masks or FFP2. These are cloth masks that are sometimes not adapted to the shape of the teacher’s face and therefore cannot be used. These are washable masks. Nobody uses this kind of cloth mask anymore. So the teachers provide themselves with masks. Sometimes FFP2 is better protected. In kindergarten, we have teachers who face children who are not masked, who are often sick, which is why many kindergarten teachers use FFP2 masks. Contrary to what Jean-Michel Blanquer says, it is possible to take classes all day long with an FFP2 mask, so you should at least have one for teachers who want to teach with FFP2. Without even talking about that, I think there’s only National Education left that doesn’t have surgical masks.

Leave a Comment