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France’s economic downturn overwhelms education

23 August 2023 08:30 (UTC+04:00)
France’s economic downturn overwhelms education
Elnur Enveroglu
Elnur Enveroglu
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In the last few years, the rapidly increasing inflation in France has disrupted the education system. The cost of living has become unbearable for many university students in France, as inflation continues to make their purchasing power very difficult.

Many students even complain about their daily living and report that the grant they receive is reduced every time.

The National Union of Students of France (Union nationale des étudiants de France or UNEF) is the largest national students' union in France. It is historically close to the Socialist Party, with many of its member joining the party after leaving student life.

It works to represent the interest of students for national and local governments, political parties, the government bodies concerned with higher education and their administration of the universities. The organisation is also active on the international arena.

According to the results of a report published on August 14 of this year by the National Union of Students of France (UNEF), due to inflation, tuition fees in France for the next academic year (2023/2024) will increase by 6.47%, which means an increase of about 600 euros.

"We are gradually moving towards the stage of serious student poverty, and its evolution is getting worse year by year," warns UNEF.

In France, students also complain about the lack of access to medical services. They are usually forced to forego medical services to save money. According to the information released by UNEF, in 2022, 38% of students could not take advantage of medical services due to the above-mentioned reason. The student organization accuses the French government of not taking steps to improve the social situation of students.

According to the official figures announced by France, although the inflation in the country is 4.3%, the price increase is more. Thus, the financial assistance of 400 euros per child allocated by the government on August 16, 2023 to poor families as support for school expenses is not compensated by the price increase.

Further to the report, the students’ union UNEF denounced the inadequacy of government actions to meet the immediate needs of these young people in search of a better future.

"For the past five years, the public policies of President Emmanuel Macron's government towards students have fallen far short of expectations. Students have received one false promise after another and half-hearted measures, so their situation is not improving," the report added.

The point is that the students' complaint tries to show the most subtle fact about the government's education reforms. It reveals that Macron’s first five-year term is the one that has invested the least over the last 15 years, with 21.13% less investment in direct aid than under then-President Nicolas Sarkozy in 2007-2012 and 55.86% less than under then-President Francois Hollande in 2012- 2017.

There is another explanatory interpretation of the issue. Macron's government is more concerned with foreign policy than being involved in overcoming the country’s domestic shortcomings, or, to put it more bluntly, the French government's unnecessary interference in the politics of other countries. In the world of politics, everyone has witnessed how many states have been brought to an end by such a system of governance. If we consider that not only students in France, but also pensioners and even professors and teaching staff are suffering from the country's economic recession, then we can say that in the next few years, France can be seen as the most chaotic place.

By the way, Tiranty Street, located in the center of Nice, which is considered one of the most touristic cities in France, has become a place for drug addicts. Thierry, the owner of a commercial store located on the same street, says that he was also attacked by drug addicts. The city hall admits that it is aware of the problem, tells the residents that it is powerless in this matter and puts all the responsibility on the French police.

Thus, the whole processes show once again that failure to draw conclusions from mistakes and faulty management is a factor leading to the downfall of the country. Macron's rule in France still does not gradually eliminate these shortcomings. On the contrary, it provides close support to an aggressor country called Armenia, located 5 thousand km away from its country, and stimulates the deepening of the conflict in the South Caucasus region. This progress also shows that France may become the next and the only center of separatists moving from Garabagh after some time.

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Elnur Enveroglu is AzerNews’ deputy editor-in-chief, follow him on @ElnurMammadli1

Follow us on Twitter @AzerNewsAz

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