‘A collective failure’: uproar in France after college head quits in row over Muslim veil

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‘A collective failure’: uproar in France after college head quits in row over Muslim veil

French politicians from throughout the spectrum have expressed dismay over the resignation of a Paris college principal who had acquired dying threats after asking a pupil to take away her Muslim veil on the premises.

In a present of assist, prime minister Gabriel Attal, a former schooling minister, was set to obtain the principal late on Wednesday, his workplace mentioned.

Secularism and faith are hot-button points in France, which is residence to Europe’s largest Muslim neighborhood.

In 2004, authorities banned schoolchildren from carrying “indicators or outfits by which college students ostensibly present a spiritual affiliation” similar to headscarves, turbans or kippas on the premise of the nation’s secular legal guidelines which are supposed to assure neutrality in state establishments.

The headteacher’s departure comes amid deep tensions within the nation after a collection of incidents together with the killing of a instructor by an Islamist former pupil final 12 months.

The pinnacle on the Maurice Ravel lycée in japanese Paris give up after receiving dying threats on-line following an altercation with a pupil final month, officers informed AFP.

In late February he had requested three college students to take away their Islamic headscarves on college premises, however one in all them refused and an altercation ensued, in line with prosecutors. The pinnacle later acquired dying threats on-line.

In keeping with a letter despatched by the varsity to academics, pupils and oldsters, the principal stood down for “safety causes”, whereas schooling officers mentioned he had taken “early retirement”.

In a message addressed to the varsity’s workers, quoted by French communist each day L’Humanité, the principal mentioned that he had taken the choice to go away “for his personal security and that of the varsity”.

“It’s a shame,” Bruno Retailleau, the top of the right-wing Republicans faction within the Senate higher home, mentioned on X on Wednesday.

“We are able to’t settle for it,” Boris Vallaud, the top of the Socialist deputies within the Nationwide Meeting decrease home, informed tv broadcaster France 2, calling the incident “a collective failure”.

Marion Maréchal, granddaughter of far-right patriarch Jean-Marie Le Pen and a far-right politician herself, spoke on Sud Radio of a “defeat of the state” within the face of “the Islamist gangrene”.

Maud Bregeon, a lawmaker with President Emmanuel Macron’s Renaissance get together, additionally took intention at “an Islamist motion”.

“Authority lies with college heads and academics, and we’ve got an obligation to assist this instructional neighborhood,” Bregeon mentioned.

Socialist Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo known as the principal to “guarantee him of her complete assist and solidarity”, mentioned her workplace, including she was “appalled and dismayed.”

The scholar lodged a criticism towards the principal, accusing him of mistreating her through the incident. She informed French each day Le Parisien that she had been “hit arduous on the arm” by the principal.

The scholar is an grownup who was on the college for vocational coaching.

The Paris public prosecutor’s workplace informed AFP on Wednesday that her criticism had been dismissed.

On the identical time, an investigation was opened into cyber-harassment following the dying threats towards the top.

In an extra present of assist, the schooling ministry mentioned in a press release that it could “by no means” abandon academics within the face of “threats”.

The ministry mentioned that “all groups” remained mobilised, including that the principal’s determination to go away his put up was “comprehensible given the seriousness of the assaults towards him”.

Schooling minister Nicole Belloubet visited the varsity in early March and deplored the “unacceptable assaults”.

A 26-year-old man has been arrested for making dying threats towards the principal on the web. He is because of stand trial in April.


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