The 2023 baccalaureate specialty exams will take place from Monday to next Wednesday.
Several National Education unions are calling for “pursue” mobilization, “including by the supervisors’ strike during the baccalaureate specialty exams which begin on Monday”, learned franceinfo from a union source on Friday March 17. This call was relayed in particular by the SNES-FSU, the main secondary union, FO, South and the CGT, which are preparing to file a notice.
As of Thursday evening, the inter-union denounced “a real denial of democracy”, after the use of Article 49.3 of the Constitution by the government to pass the pension reform without a vote in the National Assembly. She continues to “demand the withdrawal of this reform” and also calls for union rallies this weekend before the “new big day of demonstrations” Thursday, March 23.
At the regional level, several unions have already filed their strike notice for next week. This is the case of the academic inter-union of Brittany (CGT Educ’action, snFOlc, SNES-FSU Bretagne, Sud éducation). In a statement posted on social media on Friday morning, they claim to have filed a strike notice covering “the period of examinations and corrections” and claim the “postponement of specialty tests to June”. They call for a strike “wherever possible, before, during and after the written specialty tests, the oral, practical and experimental skills tests”.
An eventuality anticipated by the National Education
The unions pass on the responsibility to the government for the possible consequences on the examinations. According to them, the use of 49.3 causes a lot of reaction in schools and they talk about “brutal gesture”, of “denial of democracy”. The ministry had anticipated this eventuality, the heads of establishments always provide more staff than necessary to compensate for last minute absences. High schools could therefore take on a few striking teachers without consequences on exams, but up to a certain point, of course.
Not sure, however, that the strike will be very well attended: it is difficult for teachers to disrupt the baccalaureate, which is a kind of totem, and for which they have worked a lot since the beginning of the year. And most don’t want to stress their students out more than they already are.
Possible but unlikely high school blockages
Should we also fear blockages in front of examination centers by high school students? The high school movements are by nature quite spontaneous, but for the moment the organizations are not calling for blockades on Monday. The stakes of the examination are too great. On the side of National Education, it is said that all means must be used to ensure that the tests take place, including the intervention of the police. The Minister of the Interior has also asked the prefects to pay particular attention to these baccalaureate days.
We will therefore see the extent of the disturbances next week, but as of today, mobilizations are underway, particularly in universities: blockages have been recorded in around fifteen sites, according to the count of the student union L’Alternative, at Paris, but also in Mulhouse, Tours or the ENS in Lyon, Sciences Po in Grenoble and Lille.
But for the moment, the mobilization remains measured. There are actions, but in the same proportions as in recent weeks. What also plays is that some universities have decided on administrative closures, to avoid blockages. This is the case of Paris 1, in Tolbiac. Professors are also switching courses to distance learning, with modules on the internet, which in fact reduces the number of students on campus and reduces mobilization, according to the unions.