Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

FOCUS

Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

Read more

WEB NEWS

Russian aid convoy: Mission accomplished?

Read more

WEB NEWS

Actor Orlando Jones lauches 'Bullet Bucket Challenge'

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'Macron Economics'

Read more

BUSINESS DAILY

Macron-economics, the former banker turned minister

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

'The capital of sex, drugs, alcohol, trash and trashy tourism'

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

French government crisis: 'Krankreich' not Frankreich

Read more

DEBATE

Hollande's Last Chance: Can Weakened President Reform Without Left Flank? (part 2)

Read more

DEBATE

Hollande's Last Chance: Can Weakened President Reform Without Left Flank?

Read more

  • Video: Milan is starting point for Syrian refugees’ European odyssey

    Read more

  • France’s Hollande puts young ex-banker in top economy post

    Read more

  • Video: Iraq’s Yazidis flee to spiritual capital of Lalish

    Read more

  • Airstrikes and Assad - Obama’s military conundrum in Syria

    Read more

  • IMF’s Lagarde put under formal investigation in French corruption case

    Read more

  • American journalist held captive in Syria arrives in US

    Read more

  • In pictures: France’s new ministers

    Read more

  • 'Lasting' ceasefire agreed for Gaza, Abbas says

    Read more

  • Far-right ‘Russian Jihad’ fighters cross into Ukraine

    Read more

  • American 'Islamic State fighter' killed in Syria

    Read more

  • The ‘war’ at the heart of France’s ruling party

    Read more

  • Burger King to buy Canada's Tim Hortons for $11 billion

    Read more

  • Rebels 'shoot down' UN helicopter in South Sudan

    Read more

  • Air France pilots threaten September strike

    Read more

  • WHO seeks stricter regulation for e-cigarettes

    Read more

  • World’s ’most expensive’ apartment to go on sale in Monaco

    Read more

France

French schools to get ‘secularism charter’

© Photo: AFP

Video by Halla Mohieddeen

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-09-09

France’s new ‘secularism charter’, which all state schools will be required to display, is to be unveiled Monday and is expected to remind students that they cannot object to the school’s curriculum for religious reasons.

France’s first “secularism charter” for schools is to be revealed by the country’s Education Minister Vincent Peillon on Monday.

Although the precise details of the charter’s content are not yet known, it is expected to remind pupils of the strict secularist principles of France’s education system and make clear that they are not allowed to miss certain classes for religious reasons.

All public schools in France will be required to display the document from Monday onwards.

Peillon said the charter would help to instill the “values of the Republic” in the country’s young people, in an interview with French weekly Le Journal du Dimanche on Sunday.

“The first article of our constitution states that the Republic is indivisible, democratic, social and secular,” he said.

“The school must teach these values, explain their meaning, remember their history. Because if we do not teach them, do not be surprised if they were misunderstood or even ignored,” he added.

A draft version of the charter was published online by French education news site Le Café Pédagogique in July.  It contained a total of 17 paragraphs outlining the education system’s secularist principles and how these affect students.

Paragraph 4, for example, states: "Secularism guarantees freedom of conscience for all. Everyone is free to believe or not to believe. It allows the free expression of his beliefs, respecting those of others within the limits of public order."

Another paragraph stipulates that: “No student may invoke religious or political convictions to challenge a teacher’s right to teach certain parts of the curriculum."

French schools already have strict secularism rules, including a ban on wearing religious clothing or symbols.

Peillon has also said he wants to introduce compulsory classes on “secular morality” later this year.

However, some have questioned whether such measures stigmatise religion and France’s Muslim minority in particular, something Peillon strongly denies.

Asked by the Journal du Dimanche if the new charter conceals a certain degree of Islamophobia, his reply was a firm “Absolutely not!”

“Secularism is not against any religion,” he said. “It provides a protected and neutral space in which to give everyone, regardless of religion, regardless of their social or geographical origin, the means to choose and build a life.”

Date created : 2013-09-08

  • FRANCE

    School year begins in France with string of reforms

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French girl attempts suicide after ‘veil attack’

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    French school excludes Muslim girl for wearing headband

    Read more

COMMENT(S)