Two teachers suspended from a school south of Caen: friends and parents take action

Parents of pupils and friends mobilized this Thursday, September 1, the day of the new school year, to support two teachers who had been suspended as a precaution at the school of Saint-Martin-de-Fontenay, south of Caen (Calvados) . ©Grégory MAUCORPS

It is a special return which took place on Thursday 1er September 2022 at Saint-Martin-de-Fontenayuntil south of Caen (Calvados). The city of 2,500 has just over 200 students at the Charles-Huard School in the heart of the city.

A decision announced two days ago

Some parents of students and friends stood in front of the school from 8.30 am with a sign in their hand: “Impeccable professional files = suspension”. Their goal: to mobilize for two establishment teachers. Their sign refers to the precautionary suspension of two permanent teachers at the school, which was decided two days ago, Tuesday, August 30.

While the majority of students’ parents were unaware of the situation, some were surprised to see these two teachers not welcoming their children to the recovery. However, two substitutes were present to ensure that the start of the school year went as smoothly as possible.

A relationship problem

What is happening at the school of Saint-Martin-de-Fontenay? The day before the start of the school year, four representatives of the parents’ association were received at the town hall with a member of the school inspectorate to discuss the situation. “We were told that this suspension was not a sanction against the teachers. We don’t blame them about the pedagogy or their relationship with the children, it’s a relational problem,” Raphaël, Sandra, Thibault and Caroline, the parents of the students present at this meeting, call out.

Scientific director Armelle Fellahi confirms this.

We are dealing with a situation of very high tension between the principal and two teachers. We learned it late during the school trip, early July. We need some time to understand the ins and outs of this story. This precautionary suspension is not a sanction. This decision was made to protect everyone, teachers and children, prevent disruptions and make the start of the school year more peaceful.

Armelle Fellahi, Academic Director

Teachers complained

The academic management states that it has made this choice “in order not to take the risk that this will be at the expense of the quality of education. It is a temporary measure, the time to analyze the situation,” continues Armelle Fellahi.

If the bottom of the story is not known, the two teachers, for their part, have filed a complaint with the prosecutor for violation of the private law of correspondence. Their next of kin indicate that they will take this decision as a sanction. “They take it very badly. They were happy to resume this Thursday, it’s a punishment for them. A feeling that also includes Academic Director Armelle Fellahi. “I understand this is a difficult situation for everyone.”

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“Situation was much too deteriorated”

Why wasn’t everyone in this file suspended as a precaution at the time of the investigation? “Everyone has different missions and the director doesn’t have the same mission as the teachers,” specifies Armelle Fellahi. “And we have no replacement for this leadership position.”

Since this is a relational problem among the teaching staff, was it not possible to get everyone around a table to discuss the care?

The situation was far too bad for that. There is much to rebuild. We analyze the situation and work on a mediation proposal to renew the dialogue. We want it to take as little time as possible to quickly find a peaceful situation, that everyone is okay, but we shouldn’t go too fast either.

Armelle Fellahi, Academic Director

“It’s very sad for the kids”

As far as teaching is concerned, the classes of the two teachers will be taught by the same substitutes for the duration of the suspension, as a precaution, which can last up to four months. “We are stabilizing the situation so that it is not to the detriment of the children,” said Armelle Fellahi.

Delegates from the parents of the school will be received at the Academic Directorate in Hérouville on Friday, September 2 at 5.30 pm to discuss the subject. “It is very sad for the children and the teachers, it will affect everyone,” explains a parent of a student. “We have a dynamic school, with a great atmosphere, great teachers and a lot of projects, it’s a huge blow. It was an internal matter that could have been settled between responsible adults. It will leave scars.”

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