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Giselle is in grade CM1-- fourth grade in US schools. Today at her school on Ile. St. Louis they had a pair of visitors. One was from the Gendarmerie and the other was an Avocat- a lawyer. These gentlemen spoke to the assembled classes of the 8 and 9 year old children. They told the children that there would soon be a new law in France, and a new prison. The law was that any child over the age of ten who did really bad things could be sent to the "child's prison".
Giselle's words:

"They said that if the thing you did was not extremely bad, like putting fire on your school or a car or something like that, that you would have to stay for three months. But if you did something extremely bad- like really putting fire on your school, or attacking your teacher, you would have to stay for a year, without your parents."

"Richard, I said--Richard, you think you're immune- go look at your eyes-- they're full of moon--


Capitalism searches out the darkest corners of human potential, and mainlines them.
by geezer in Paris (risico at wanadoo(flypoop)fr) on Thu Oct 25th, 2007 at 01:32:41 PM EST
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Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Thu Oct 25th, 2007 at 01:41:52 PM EST
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Thank you, rg.

Capitalism searches out the darkest corners of human potential, and mainlines them.
by geezer in Paris (risico at wanadoo(flypoop)fr) on Thu Oct 25th, 2007 at 02:50:41 PM EST
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As I told you, some are intent on destroying the French education system.

My mother was instructed to accept that a cop would come during her lesson, essentially giving up the maths lesson she was to make, to let the cop speak for two hours. She couldn't refuse, so just didn't show up for that lesson...

Un roi sans divertissement est un homme plein de misères

by linca (antonin POINT lucas AROBASE gmail.com) on Thu Oct 25th, 2007 at 01:54:49 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not to want to be a fly in the ointment on this, but there is in fact, in many parts of France, a security issue in schools. It's not propaganda that there is violence against teachers, and that delinquency in schools of a small minority of students gets in the way of learning for all their classmates.

Curiously enough, the places of highest insecurity happen to be places where the working class live, making it harder to obtain that education which is the ticket to equality in this economic system (and likely, alternatives to it as well).

As a parent who will be having children in the same system next year, and as a friend of about half dozen teachers in the system, I'm actually not displeased by this. It's not my first choice in terms of meeting the challenge, but I recognize that it does in fact respond to an actual challenge, and would suggest that unless we start continue to be serious about this, both rhetorically and substantively, we will continue to lose the battle of ideas re: security.

Personally, I think M.-G. Buffet's proposals on this were the most serious and probably the best for children, but it is clear that there was no public will for this approach (look at her score) because it costs money. So, if you want security, and you want it on the cheap (incidentally, I think that's Sarko's unwritten motto) you get what we are getting now.

Not optimal, but imho better than doing nothing at all. Instead of decrying it, we need to present the alternative.

The Hun is always either at your throat or at your feet. Winston Churchill

by r------ on Fri Oct 26th, 2007 at 11:01:18 AM EST
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This is a school on Ile Saint Louis. I don't think any of these kids will ever end up in jail, or insult a teacher, except if in the future France toughens up of white collar crime...

Un roi sans divertissement est un homme plein de misères
by linca (antonin POINT lucas AROBASE gmail.com) on Fri Oct 26th, 2007 at 11:36:03 AM EST
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Oh, I understand this, but if you do it in one place, you do it everywhere, that's only fair. The better thing would be to have enough funding of school establishments to put enough assistants/surveillants in place to ensure security, and modularise the staffing levels based on need, but that costs money.

So, if you are going to go the cheap route and instead scare the spit out of impressionable young children, there's no reason the impressionable young children of the bourgeoisie should be exempted.

Plus, I'm sure the establishment is not far from Nos ancêtres les gauloises, a place known for much public disorder due to the all-you-can-drink wine. Is that place even still there? Overpriced crappy food, but the all you can drink wine made it all worth it.

(And we all know the ill effects such disorder can have on impressionable minds....)

The Hun is always either at your throat or at your feet. Winston Churchill

by r------ on Fri Oct 26th, 2007 at 11:52:59 AM EST
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