resignation or retention in national education, the question of the end of reshuffle

Gabriel Attal and Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, during the transfer of powers to the Ministry of Education on January 11, 2024. ALAIN JOCARD / AFP Gabriel Attal and Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, during the transfer of powers to the Ministry of Education on January 11, 2024.

ALAIN JOCARD / AFP

Gabriel Attal and Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, during the transfer of powers to the Ministry of Education on January 11, 2024.

POLITICS – Will they stay or not? The retention of Education and Sports Minister Amélie Oudé-Castér in her post raises questions at the top of the state as the executive prepares to appoint in this second week of February – “Monday or Tuesday”, depending on the AFP executive adviser – a new “package” of ministers who will complete the government of Gabriel Attal was published on January 11.

It is an understatement to say that the Minister of National Education missed her return to school. Less than a month after his appointment to the Rue de Grenelle, there followed: the controversy over the Stanislas private Catholic school and the Parcoursup ring road, revelations about his salary at the head of the French tennis federation, a teachers' strike on February 1 where his statements added to the tension, and finally his resignation rector of the Paris Academy after disagreeing with one of his arbitrations…

Despite this difficult list, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra “has the confidence” of Emmanuel Macron and Gabriel Attal, assured this Sunday, February 4, the minister responsible for relations with the parliament, Marie Lebec. The resident of rue de Grenelle “was very successful in his preparations for the Olympic Games. Therefore, I believe that today it is important to go forward and respond to what the teachers ask of us”, and that “beyond the question of the person”, confirmed his colleague from the government on France 3.

“The great majority of the representatives of the Renaissance left it”

However, within the government and the majority, the discomfort is clearly visible. When asked by Sud Radio on February 1 about the legitimacy of the minister in defense of public schools and mixed schools, government spokeswoman Prisca Thevenot asserted that it was “the mother's choice, not the minister's.” However, as a mother, she did not do the same, she quickly explained. On franceinfo two days later, the president of the Legal Commission, Sacha Houlié, also escaped. “It's not about people, but above all the ambitions we defend. »

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In parliament, “the vast majority of (Renaissance) MPs have given up and think it's over,” an elected official of the presidential party told AFP. With nuance as to the purpose of the affair, ensuring that the president's “psychology” on the subject remains “unfathomable.”

“It is unimaginable that there is a minister of education, it would actually mean that she stays and stays”, and if we add the minister of sports, “it means that what she likes and knows how to do best, she will not directly deal with,” the former minister told AFP . Before concluding: “She's going through hell.”

On the taping of TF1's morning show on Friday, February 2, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra indicated that she was “not thinking about resigning”. However, she specifies that she did not have any guarantees from the executive couple about her support. “Nothing is guaranteed, for anyone,” she avoids.

Joint super-ministries

In addition to education, the executive is preparing the appointment of up to 15 seconded ministers and secretaries of state to replace those with very broad portfolios, such as Catherine Vautrin (labour, health and solidarity) or Christophe Béchu (ecology). transition and territorial cohesion, besides having under its control housing and transport).

Catherine Vautrin also confirmed in L'Union on Saturday that she would delegate ministers, without further details. In Bercy, the four outgoing Roland Lescure (Industry), Jean-Noël Barrot (Digital), Olivia Grégoire (PME) and Thomas Cazenave (Budget), are confident of their retention, according to ministerial sources, especially as their supervisory minister Bruno Le Maire is committed for “stability”.

“Ministers who have a list of duties as long as an arm can only manage priorities, so we are impatiently waiting” for delegated ministers, notes the majority representative who regrets that he no longer has an interlocutor on his topics, but would still like to “move forward”.

Christophe Béchu defended, in contrast, this Sunday the advantages of a “hardened” government team, which allows for a more “agile” response to be provided, taking the agricultural crisis as an example. Even if, as the elected Horizon official admits, “everything counts” in the rearrangements: “geographical, political balance, distribution of positions”. Faced with a right-leaning government, MoDem spokesman Erwan Balanant wants “to rebalance, if only in the interest of the majority”. “I judge people by what they do, not by what they are,” assures Sacha Houlié, one of Macronie's left-wing figures. Before firing, cryptically, “it's always useful to know where you're coming from.”

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