2. Responsibility for French School Education

  1. Ministry of Education
  2. Local Education Authorities
  3. School Councils

2.2. School Education Authorities in France

As a consequence of the very centralised structure of responsibility local councils have traditionally had only a limited role in relation to education, mainly restricted to the construction and management of school buildings.

Nevertheless, as a result of measures of decentralisation introduced since the mid 1980s they have been granted greater responsibility.

In addition to building management, their responsibilities now include the recruitment and management of all non-teaching staff, school meals, school transport, as well as greater control over the number and location of schools in each area and the intake of schools.

Broadly speaking, the division of responsibility for the three main levels of school education is divided between the three tiers of local government.

Table: Council Responsibility

Council School
Local Councils/Mairie Nursery & Primary Schools
County Councils/Conseil Général Lower Secondary Schools
Regional Councils/Conseil Régional Upper Secondary Schools

However, lest it be thought the government has been hasty in its programme of decentralisation, it has retained responsibility for the key areas of the curriculum and for the appointment and remuneration of teachers.

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