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Wake Up, Jules Ferry, they’re going mad!

A controversial book about a national scandal: the complete failure of secondary schools and of their mission.

French high schools, cornerstones of the educational system, are failing magnificently in achieving their main objective, which is to give children the will to learn, despite the good will and professionalism of teachers. Mainly because of an overloaded syllabus, that is also inflexible, incoherent, obsolete and excessive.

School programs have indeed been denounced these past twenty years as such by ministers, both left and right-winged, “basic” teachers as well as Nobel prize winners…But to no avail: The Mammoth remains wedged in, between internal wars and useless habits.

The result: a scandal which endangers each year the futures of hundreds of teenagers : of the 25 percent of pupils that barely make it to secondary school, 90 % are still struggling four years later, and will not even pass their baccalaureate. What this means is that, in the best of cases, secondary school is useless; in the worst of cases, it manages to disgust pupils towards culture and knowledge. School textbooks are the best proof of this collective foundering.

One suddenly catches oneself smiling – mostly because the only other option is crying – when reading the appalling results of the research of Emmanuel Davidenkoff and his team of secondary school teachers, who review the textbooks delivered to our dear children, and their denunciation of their many incoherencies, approximations, contradictions and other obsolescences.


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