LREM’s fun campaign against teachers

Auvergne teachers have received emails or phone calls from presidential candidates, a method that has made some members of the teaching staff cringe.

Some teachers from Auvergne, but also from other parts of France, have received e-mails, but sometimes also messages on their answering machines, from very specific correspondents: specific candidates for the presidential elections. Specifically, they received an email from Emmanuel Macron’s campaign team: “We were told that it would be impossible to increase the salaries of your teachers in REP and REP+. Did that stop us? The premium of €4,500/year proves that this is not the case. So yes, despite what the system says that does not want to change, Emmanuel Macron wants to accept all challenges and makes a pact with you today. Grandson of a teacher to whom he owes so much, husband of a teacher, he is committed to ensuring that you are all better recognized, better paid and more free […] To finally be rated better, vote on April 10th and 24th.

A national educational directory would have been used to send this email to teachers. : “It is the rectors and directors of the schools who consult it and it is not widely known, but I know that these email addresses are publicly available. There is a directory from National Education where you can have all email addresses of schools in 3 clicks. In fact, it is a mass broadcast that has been carried out, but not only in Puy-de-Dôme, but almost nationally. I’m surprised, but not that much, because I don’t think it’s the only party that has done this for these elections. Indeed, it is a way for the presidential candidate to use the means of national education to make propaganda” says Juliette Grand, Allier’s SNES FSU delegate.

Emmanuel Macron’s campaign team confirmed the sending of emails, but denied any use of ministerial resources and stated that they had commissioned a service provider to carry out this election propaganda: “There are indeed mailings that have been sent to promote the actions of Emmanuel Macron’s program. These e-mails are sent to target groups via service providers whose task it is to send messages. We do what we call database leasing. I can imagine that the mailings were aimed at people who have a strong interest. We do not have a database according to the rules of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation, editor’s note) », says a member of the outgoing president’s campaign team.

It’s absolutely unbearable!

Not all teachers liked this method, according to Juliette Grand: “Formally, but also in terms of content, it is absolutely unbearable for the teaching and non-teaching staff to have such scandalous proposals that do not solve any of the specific problems that have arisen, whether in relation to staff, in relation to working conditions, in relation on wages, in terms of collegiality, especially in schools. We can clearly see what Emmanuel Macron is aiming for as a candidate in his program, which is to further split up the staff, the precarious, and subject them to an even greater hierarchy, with an open possibility for the heads of institutions and school principals themselves to recruit the teaching teams who they have to lead. Colleagues obviously disagree. » The southern union was also outraged and shared the email on Twitter:

She is particularly outraged by the promise of appreciation in the email: “If he really wanted it, he would have done it for 5 years. I think he had 5 years left in power with a government that was in his line so he could have done the raise in the last 5 years. What worries us at the level of the CGT, at the level of the unions, if there is a revaluation, this is subject to the counterparties in terms of working hours. He said that teachers are not doing enough and that salary increases depend on more missions, more hours worked and more responsibility, that’s not at all what we’re asking for. Most colleagues work more than 40 hours a week or even a lot more, and their heads are already under water. You’ve had to adapt to the latest reforms, we go from reform to reform, the programs change, the exams change the way of doing things…”

However, his campaign team promises an improvement in the condition of teachers: “If Emmanuel Macron is elected, one of his priority projects will be to take very strong action for the world of education. So teachers are obviously important. I saw a letter that was emailed to certain actors in the education world and the aim of the letter is also to present the actions that we want to take for the academic world and the actions that affect them directly to explain. » But these promises Juliette Grand doesn’t believe in: “We are only promised that it will only get worse in the next 5 years. I believe that there are few teachers who are fooled by the maneuvering of this email, but also by the President’s announcements, but I believe that many colleagues find it absolutely unbearable to be treated in this way again. For every election we have either hugs, because for some candidates teachers, employees of the National Education System are a reserve of votes for the elections. »

David Aliguen, co-secretary of the CGT Educ’Action, is also outraged: “It’s a bit abused when you see the 5 years we’ve just lived as teachers where we’ve been completely despised, not upgraded in salary, or really on the fringes. Not to mention the health crisis where we were told to make do with resources we didn’t have and then spat at for apparently failing the students. It’s a little strong coffee. » He doesn’t blame Emmanuel Macron alone, as he doesn’t think he’s the only candidate who resorted to campaign advertising: “I’ve also seen in teachers’ social media groups people saying they had a pre-recorded message from Zemmour on their answering machine. On the other hand, I didn’t see that with Mélenchon.” However, these messages were not just for teachers. “It is the drop of water that causes the vase to overflow. Macron’s five-year tenure was clearly not a five-year period of progress for teachers, for national education in general. I’m not even sure if it’s very useful to do that because it’s a bit provocative.points to David Aliguen.

For Anne Biscos from the Rassemblement National in Clermont-Ferrand, the program of her candidate Marine Le Pen is aimed at the teaching staff: “Teachers, like all voters in France, are being targeted by the National Rally. We have a program that affects her. Compensation: Marine Le Pen proposes an increase of 3% per year or 15% over the five-year term. In addition, there is the training of teachers with a focus on the technical part. We want to elevate VET teachers because they are at the heart of our students’ success. Of course, we attach great importance to the safety of our operations. The Samuel Paty affair shows a total dysfunction of administrations and schools in the face of all this laissez-faire. We know that teachers are not supported, adequately listened to and defended. There needs to be more sanctions for students who don’t follow instructions, reduce the number of students per class, and better protect teachers through principals.”

For them, teachers can be persuaded by the RN: “I think the Samuel Paty affair has highlighted the problems mentioned and shows that teachers are becoming more and more interested in Marine Le Pen’s programme. » As for the email propaganda, she denounces practices that would go beyond simply calling a vote: “On the other hand, there is a completely scandalous thing that Emmanuel Macron has done and is still doing, which has been brought up by several of our activists: the Ministry of National Education file is being used by him to support his anti-propaganda make Marine LePen. We don’t have the means to target them (teacher, ed.) like Emmanuel Macron, on the other hand we invite you to watch our program. Marine Le Pen attaches great importance to education and school. » The second ballot will take place on April 24th. According to the opinion research institute IFOP, in 2017, in the first round of the presidential elections, the majority of teachers voted for Emmanuel Macron (38%) and only 5% for Marine Le Pen.

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