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What’s wrong with France’s schools?

French schools are meant to promote secular, republican values, but their conformism is stifling pupils

By Lucy Wadham   April 2015

Pupils at a secondary school in Lyon, 2012: "l'Education Nationale has been the state's main tool for promoting republican values." © Jean Philippe Ksiazek/AFP/Getty Images

Since the terrorist attacks on Charlie Hebdo and the kosher supermarket in Paris in January, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, France’s indefatigable and impressive Education Minister, is everywhere. Ushered into the limelight by President François Hollande and Prime Minister Manuel Valls, she is now representing the…

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