CAPES: the internship nightmare

CAPES: the internship nightmare

The reform of teacher training, known as "mastering" really came into force at the start of the 2010 school year. First of all, there are the CAPES 2010 receipts, which were found in the face of pupils without training, and sometimes without a tutor; then now those who prepare the CAPES 2011 and 2012 in master's teaching, and which for many cannot pass from traineeship. The culprits are not necessarily just those we believe ...

The situation of “trainee” teachers

Let's start by giving some news of the receipts to CAPES for the year 2009-2010. As in the rest, we will focus primarily on the History-Geo CAPES in Île-de-France, but we can extend to almost everything else. For this transitional situation, we therefore have receipts for the competition which, for the most part, did not do an internship during their preparation and, in addition, no longer benefit (unlike their elders) from the year of traineeship. Indeed, with this reform, a “trainee” teacher is no longer really a trainee because he finds himself full-time, with a few weeks of “training” during the year, the terms of which differ according to the academies ... The young suicidal is supposed to be supervised by a tutor for the first third of the year, then to be replaced by a M2 teaching student (or temporary staff) while he is in training, then taught in full practice, alone. But that's the theory, in fact there are almost only special cases. Without going into details, the main problem is that many "trainees" did not have a tutor at the start of the school year! They therefore found themselves alone in front of classes, without any experience or training; this is the case, for example, for dozens of positions in the Academy of Créteil in History-Geography. The first returns arrive, between depressions and resignations in number ... We will come back to the reasons for this absence of tutors. But to summarize, with this system, students can have in the same year (and sometimes for several different subjects) several poorly or not trained teachers, when they have not completely given up on the way! I recall that this reform is supposed to improve the training of teachers and their professional situation (among other things with an increase in salary). Everything is a lie, but who doubted it?

The internship nightmare

Something partly planned, but this time underestimated in the disaster: student internships in preparation for future CAPES. Reform "thinkers" claimed that the year of internship would be "replaced" by an internship in M1 and M2. Besides the fact that it was astonishing to ask candidates for such competitions to prepare them while doing these internships (normally 108h with report to the key), the question of their organization arose. And here is the drama ! Let us take a specific example: the preparation at the Sorbonne (Paris academy) of the CAPES Histoire-Géo. Let's move on to the M1 internship, it is postponed sine die. But when it comes to the M2 teaching internship, we hit heights of anything: internships are supposed to start on December 7th, but nobody knows if in fact that will be the case! The students, who have barely come out of their writings (November 18 and 19), therefore do not know when (or if) they will do this internship, which is supposed to be in two parts (December-February; March), whereas it would be their only "training" in the field, and that in addition these internships are compulsory to validate the famous Master teaching! The main reason ? Once again the absence of guardians; half of it would be missing… However, this situation would not be general, which paradoxically still poses a problem; indeed, if in History-Geography, Letters or Spanish these internships are indeed postponed, this is not the case, for example, for Maths, SVT or eco sciences (still in the Paris academy). Is this difference in treatment normal? Would there be any sub-subjects?

The guilty

Obviously this situation is by no means due to chance or bad luck. The first culprits are to be found, it is logical, at the level of decision-makers: those who "thought" this reform, for some only to save money and slowly destroy the National Education, for others ignorant technocrats realities that were content to issue orders without asking if it was applicable. We also had a blatant example of this kind of incompetence with the obligation imposed in June 2010 to have the C2I2e and the CLES2 to be tenured in 2011, before it was postponed to 2012 in the face of the outcry ...

The second culprits are those supposed to organize the reform: the ministry and the rectorates. The first, in particular, because we learn some great things: for example, still for Histoire-Géo in Paris, the ministry contented itself with asking its list of usual tutors if they could accommodate a pair of trainees; the problem is, some have refused, and now it's a bit late to ask others. Worse, it had been decided to do these courses on Tuesday and Thursday, and the ministry therefore deprived itself of any tutors available and agreed for the other days of the week… On the other hand, we cannot blame the IUFM and universities, which manage as best they can with contradictory instructions every two days, and have to deal with panicked students while trying to offer them viable courses and timetables ...

Finally, let's not forget the last culprits. Apart from the absurdity of the reform itself, the main problem today is the lack of tutors, whether for trainee professors or for master's degree students. These teachers, supported by parents' associations and certain unions, intend by this refusal to express their discontent and their rejection of this reform. Certainly, but the only victims today are the trainee teachers, the students ... and the pupils since they find themselves facing new teachers who have not been trained and not helped! The ministry, the government, does not care (their goal being to weaken the institution to purge it), while the media speak little about it. We must then go back to the year 2009, when academics demonstrated en masse in the streets against (among other things) mastering; they asked for the support of the secondary because it was a better chance of success of the mobilization, but especially because they knew that it would be the secondary which would suffer the most damage because of this reform. However, teachers, unions and parents of middle and high school students have largely refused to budge. Worse, a significant part supported this reform, despite the warnings. They therefore decided to move at the time of the effective implementation of the reform, once faced with a fait accompli. This is obviously irresponsible, and rather than sacrificing their current and future young colleagues, and their students, they would do better to embrace and find other ways to reverse this reform.

We therefore do not know how this will develop. A hang-up solution will undoubtedly be found, but not up to the stakes. Then we must not forget the spirit and the barely hidden objectives of this reform, and wonder what will happen if the same political majority is re-elected in 2012. Hopefully everyone will take their responsibilities this time.

Video: The Internship Program at Rhinebeck Equine.