For several weeks, the universities of Toulouse, Nantes or even certain Parisian campuses have been blocked by students. They demonstrate in particular against the new mode of access to the university of which they denounce the selective aspect. But for a week, they have also been mobilizing against the violence of which certain students were victims during the evacuation of an amphitheater of the law school of the University of Montpellier. Europe 1 returns to the various aspects of this mobilization.
Where does this movement come from?
Act 1 – The abandonment of APB. After the fiasco of the last enrollment campaign in higher education with the Admission Post-Bac (APB) platform, it was abandoned and replaced by Parcoursup, whose enrollment phase ends on Saturday.
Act 2 – A reform of access to university. Faced with the constant increase in the number of new students each year, the Minister of Higher Education has decided to accompany the launch of this new platform with an in-depth reform of access to university.
The draw system for certain sectors, widely decried, has been abandoned . Instead, it is now for future students to meet certain specifications: the “expected”. That is to say, they must have certain skills to apply for a course. For example, applicants for the Staps course (Sciences and techniques of physical and sports activities), a particularly congested section, must have followed multidisciplinary scientific courses (life sciences, human and social sciences). If they do not meet these criteria, they will have to follow a mandatory “specific support” to get up to speed .
Act 3 – A law passed. This new system was validated by all the legislative bodies and published in the Official Journal on March 9th . A formalization which triggered the mobilization of students who had widely denounced this new system of access to university in February.
Act 4 – A broad mobilization of students. The main student unions see these new provisions as a hidden selection at the entrance to universities. Because until then, any bachelor had a place in the course of his choice at the university, whatever his skills. Students and teachers demand the withdrawal of this law.
Montpellier’s punitive expedition set fire to the powder
For the past week, claims against access to university have been accompanied by protests against the violence suffered by certain student activists at the University of Montpellier. On the night of Thursday March 22 to Friday March 23, a dozen hooded men appeared, armed with tasers and wooden planks, in the amphitheater of the law school which was occupied by students.
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Videos posted on social networks testify to the violence of these attacks. “Several students were injured, racist and homophobic insults were uttered,” said a statement from trade unions. The university has closed. Under pressure, the dean of the law school, Philippe Petel submitted his resignation , twenty-four hours after the punitive expedition. At least eight of the molested students filed charges against X.
Two days later and while classes are still suspended, the investigation is accelerating. Questioned by several testimonies, the dean and a teacher were indicted on Thursday. Several other doctoral students, in charge of tutorials, are notably accused of having been part of the hooded commando. The establishment is closed until April
What is the situation of universities?
Montpellier University. In parallel with the closure decided by the university management, 1,500 to 3,000 students and staff members voted on Tuesday for an “unlimited blockade” .
Jean-Jaures in Toulouse. Sites of the Jean-Jaurès University (human sciences) have been blocked since March to protest against the proposed merger with other establishments in the city and against the law on changes to access to the university (ORE law, Guidance and Student Success). The students voted to renew the occupation of the university until April 3, the day of participation in a joint demonstration with the railway workers.