A major theme for the next five years

Jean Damien Lizzie for Localtis

The information went unnoticed in the midst of a winter still dominated by the health crisis. On February 11, 2022, the heads of the three largest associations of elected officials (AMF, ADF and regions of France) sent a joint letter to the Prime Minister. The purpose of this letter to Jan Castex? He drew attention to the issue of funding for AESH, those who accompany children with disabilities in school.

In their letter, David Lisnard (AMF), François Sauvadet (ADF) and Carol Delga (Regions of France) discuss the consequences arising from the Council of State ruling of November 20, 2020. A ruling that reversed case law and caused misunderstanding and anxiety among local elected officials and families involved in receiving Disabled students at school. But before reaching this station, it is imperative to take a look in the rearview mirror …

When the Constitutional Council decides…

In 2003, the April 30 law provided for the creation of educational assistants. In addition to their duties of supervising and supervising pupils, they must also participate in efforts to improve the reception and inclusion of children with disabilities in school. Article 2 of the law states that educational assistants can be provided to local authorities to participate in extracurricular activities.

Then some members of the European Parliament fear that “the means by which […] will be allocated by local authorities” and the question arises very quickly as to which state or local authorities should fund this provision. The Constitutional Council decides: Article 2 of the Law of 30 April 2003, it says, “has neither the purpose nor the effect of allowing local authorities to fund the employment of assistants educators to carry out the tasks that fall to the state.

In a ruling issued on April 20, 2011, the State Council confirmed this interpretation based on Article L. 916-1 of the Education Act which states that educational assistants may be appointed in particular in order to “support the reception and integration of students with disabilities”. in school, including outside school hours.” This is in the name of the task of general organization of the public service of education which obliges the state to “take all measures and […] Implementation of the necessary means so that the right to education and the obligation to attend school have an effective character for children with disabilities. Then the rule is clearly defined: “Care through [l’État] Funding for the positions of educational assistants who are recruited to help receive and integrate children with disabilities into school in a regular setting is not limited to interventions during school time.

… and the State Council cut off

But in reality, things are not that simple. Many municipalities see their application for state support for educational assistants during extracurricular time, particularly during the midday break, rejected by the Dasen (Academic Directors of the National Education Services). And this, even if the circular issued by the Minister of National Education on 3 May 2017 states that assistance with eating meals is in fact part of the AESH intervention methods. The differences are many. And it ends up again by going to the State Council.

On November 20, 2020, the Supreme Administrative Court’s ruling was overturned. It reflects case law. In this new decision, the State Council considers that the language under which AESH can intervene “including outside school time” should be interpreted as a simple possibility of “making available to the local authority”. In this eventuality, he adds, it is up to the local authority to ensure the financial burden of this provision which, as the State Council tells us, falls under the voluntary regulation of extracurricular activities by the community. The Supreme Court insists that individual assistance “can only relate to the time allotted for education”. Where does this last confirmation come from? The State Council is still evasive. However, he tells us that his decision was based on the preparations for the Finance Act 2014. What does this text do in this story? He is the one who “professionalized” the AESH by incorporating it into the important functions of “school education” in the state budget. The State Council’s reasoning was then to consider that, since AESH is part, just like teachers, of the ‘school education’ budget, they cannot be paid for a task beyond this framework.

in 1Verse April, we cut through the gates

Where Are We Today The academies, on the basis of the State Council ruling of November 20, 2020, refuse more than ever to take responsibility for AESH’s intervention in extracurricular time, including in the canteen. Emilie Cochel, President of the RFVE (French Network of Educational Cities) and Deputy Mayor of Brest in charge of education, Deschver: “Notifications of the commissions on the rights and autonomy of persons with disabilities [CDAPH, qui accordent les aides individuelles ou mutualisées aux élèves handicapés et en déterminent la quotité horaire, ndlr] Give rights but don’t create duties. Each academy operates according to its capabilities. In Brest, the meridian interval was covered when the AESH had enough time to confer it with CDAPH. But Rin Academy told us that the subsidy stopped at 1Verse April 2022. It is now up to the communities to fund it.” The elected official fears that in academies where national education was still funding AESH’s intervention, inequality emerges: “Societies will have to make a choice and that will be too complicated for families. “This is special because the principle of compensation for the new fees to the community was not discussed.” We’re talking about specific kids who have needs other than the organization’s needs from extracurricular times,” points out Emily Kuchel.

But the puzzle is not limited to a financial equation. The proliferation of employers within a day poses other problems: “We can hear it’s up to communities to pay for this time, Emily Kuchel analyzes. But national education should still be the employer. Because today, AESH just won’t go back to 21 hours a day. week instead of 24 hours, when they do not actually earn much, but this deteriorates their working conditions.In his city, where about 400 CDAPH notices allocate human aid to students with disabilities, sixty AESHs are needed for a meridian break. AESH who can be in Somewhere in the morning, and somewhere else in the afternoon, who, from now on, will organize their working time outside extracurricular times … and will have to agree to work an hour if necessary with unpaid break time if you accompany a female student to the canteen on behalf of the community This added to the staffing problems… “If we want an inclusive school, let’s go and frame it all. Today, the framework no longer exists at all. We do not have notices that are sent to National Education. So we were not informed, no coordination while half the care time is our responsibility. In the city of Brest, I have a strong service behind me, but imagine the elected officials in small communities ”, laments the elected Brestois.

Two bills on the table

Among those familiar with the case, it is often thought that this regimen does not take into account the reception of the child as a whole because it can result in multiple AESHs being involved with the same child. Although Section D. 351-16-1 of the Education Act states that a CDAPH notification can take into account “the need for the same specified person to provide support.”

How can this problem be solved when 400,000 students with disabilities are currently enrolled in regular schools and their number has increased by 19% in five years? Why not a political decision? …During his last election campaign, President of the Republic Emmanuel Macron presented it solution : “I want us to complement this work that we have begun to do for those accompanying students with disabilities by specifically allowing them to accompany extracurricular time and to have a real thirty-five hour contract.” The most optimistic will see in this the will of the state to take charge of AESH throughout the child’s time in school. If that’s really the case, two bills (here and there) are already ready…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.