Teachers in France walk out - Macron's new headache

Teachers in France walk out - Macron's new headache

Teachers in France walk out in their thousands over Covid rules to add to Macron’s woes. Huge numbers of French teachers went on strike Thursday, with the biggest teachers’ union saying half of the primary schools were closed as staff demand clarity from the government on coronavirus measures.

Late on Tuesday, after Prime Minister Jean Castex hosted union leaders, Education Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer promised some five million high-grade FFP2 masks would be made available mainly to kindergarten teachers and several thousand substitute staff recruited to help “face the crisis”.

Macron’s new headache

Coming up to France’s presidential election campaign getting underway ahead of an April vote, the walkout is awkward for President Emmanuel Macron’s government which has prided itself on keeping schools open to ease pressure on parents through the pandemic.

Teachers in France walk out

French teachers strike in their numbers. Tens of thousands also took to the streets, with the interior ministry saying almost 78,000 teachers and other education workers protested nationwide, including 8,200 in Paris.

While the education ministry said almost 40 percent of primary school teachers had walked out, top union Snuipp put the figure at 75 percent with one primary school in two closed for the day.

The strike “demonstrates the growing despair in schools”, Snuipp said in a Tuesday statement announcing the strike.

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