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Half-gauges in high schools: towards a two-tier baccalaureate?

June 08, 2021

Original Article: https://www.lci.fr/education/video-covid-19-coronavirus-etude-lyceens-demi-jauges-dans-les-lycees-des-regions-confinees-vers-un-baccalaureat-a-deux-vitesses-2181404.html

The countdown begins. In less than three months, hundreds of thousands of high school students will take the baccalaureate (or what is left of it since only the final exams in philosophy and the grand oral have been maintained, the others being subject to continuous assessment). However, not everyone will necessarily have the same chances in front of their copy depending on where they are educated: public or private high school, in an area that has or has not been re-defined ... In the end, the students will not have had the same number of hours in class and remotely. 

This is the meaning of a column published last week in Le Monde by the associate of philosophy Claude Obadia. " It must be recognized that today we are unable to offer all high school students the same conditions of education and success at the 2021 session of the baccalaureate ", he regretted, calling for the tests tank terminals are also replaced by continuous monitoring.

The day after the publication of this text, the government announced the new confinement of sixteen departments for at least four weeks, and the switching of all high schools in these areas in half-gauges - 50% of students in face-to-face, 50% in distancing. An announcement that worries the future baccalaureate holders concerned. "It's going to be even harder, it's less time in high school to learn," laments in the TF1 report at the top of this article a high school student whose establishment, located in the Alpes-Maritimes, must organize itself to give even more distance lessons to his students during this 3rd confinement . " When you're at home, it's complicated, because you always have temptations other than work. It's hard to motivate yourself",one of his comrades admits. 

Parents also fear that the inequalities between students will increase. "I have my niece who is in Alsace," says a mother. The students in this department "had this hybrid system from November to January, but since then they are in full class. Ours, no. We wonder if the children will be prepared in the same way." 

According to Jean-Remi Girard, president of the National Union of high schools and college (SNALC) and teacher in a Parisian high school, we can however "manage not to fall too late" with the hybrid system of half-gauges . Teaching in small groups makes it possible to gain in efficiency according to him. In addition, when some of the students are present in the morning and the other in the afternoon (but the establishments can for example also organize themselves from one week to the next), " this makes it possible to avoid dropping out school and settles the question of the lunchtime canteen " .  

Thanks to this device, assures us the trade unionist, "there have been no flagrant inequalities between departments since the introduction of the reduced gauges last November . In fact, the problem is not so much the baccalaureate exams, we will be very benevolent, but rather to combine education and health requirements with gauges that are difficult to comply with. " Many establishments, particularly upscale neighborhoods, "are under pressure by the parents of students so that their children are as much as possible in face-to-face, which is not compatible with the health situation , " he deplores. 

The president of the SNALC is to participate in a health point with the Ministry of National Education on Tuesday so that more precise directives are formulated to schools in the 16 confined departments . 

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