There is a passionate debate at the moment in France concerning the teaching of history and geography in French high schools. As part of a reform of French lycées, the idea is to establish a more balanced choice in the three main streams of study, called séries, by doing away with history and geography in the last year of the lycée for the students who choose to study science. This would concern half of the students as about 54% choose this stream.
This proposal has led to a heated controversy with famous French intellectuals signing a petition to stop this aspect of the reform. In France the teaching of history and geography is considered momentous as a way to help future citizens understand the world. Interestingly this petiton was initiated and signed by numerous Jewish historians and philosophers.
As someone who enjoyed these subjects at school and still love to learn about history I also disapprove of this plan but find the debate thought-provoking since it urges us to consider what school education is about.
As students, what subjects did you enjoy? As parents and/or citizens, what subjects do you deem important in a child’s education?
More about the French education system in this post