The Versailles rectorate was questioned after the suicide of a 15-year-old teenager in Poissy (Yvelines), victim of harassment. Minister Gabriel Attal took up the cause of the parents who had been threatened by the administration.
“My role, your role, is not to protect an institution at all costs, but to protect our students, our children at all costs”: the Minister of Education received the rectors on September 18 to “launch an audit in all the rectorates on all the situations of harassment which were reported to the rectorates last year”. Gabriel Attal demanded from them an “electroshock at all levels”.
This meeting followed the revelations made by BFMTV on September 16 about the existence of an exchange of letters between the Versailles rectorate and the parents of Nicolas, a young high school student. Between the months of April and May last year, this epistolary exchange gave rise to a hostile reaction from the rectorate, which judged “unacceptable” the parents’ comments denouncing the establishment’s inaction in the face of the harassment of which their son was a victim. He finally committed suicide on September 5. The academic document, which mentioned the penal code, threatened parents with slanderous denunciations.
The government supports the family
Since his arrival at the management of the National Education portfolio, Gabriel Attal has held numerous meetings on the theme of harassment. “This letter is a shame,” he reacted strongly to the media revelations of September 16. “My role is not to defend an institution at all costs,” said the young Minister of National Education to mark his disapproval of the actions of the rectorate.
Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne, for her part, felt that there had been “a failure in the type of response that was sent to extremely worried parents”.
A rectorship noticed on the sidelines of the death of Samuel Paty
The rectorate of the Versailles academy had already made headlines thanks to the Samuel Paty affair. Point had thus reported in October 2020 that the academic inspection had predicted, a few days before the death of Samuel Paty, that an “inspector should recall [à celui-ci] the rules of secularism and neutrality.
Charline Avenel, the enarque who was at the head of this rectorate during the exchange of letters, comes from the “Léopold Sédar Senghor” promotion. Appointed under controversial conditions in October 2018, this classmate of President Emmanuel Macron, former secretary-general of Sciences Po, would also have opportunely benefited from the modification of the conditions of the rules for appointing rectors. But Charline Avenel finally left her position in July to join the private education group Ionis. Perhaps she will not have responded to the failings of the administration she led.
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