National education, the largest ministry, increases by 3.9 billion, inflated by salary increases

The Minister of National Education, Gabriel Attal, during a visit to the Armandine-Mallet school, in Saint-Germain-sur-Ille (Ille-et-Vilaine), September 4, 2023.

A confirmation of salary envelopes and the elimination of 2,500 teaching positions, these are the salient points of the national education budget for 2024, presented Wednesday September 27 by Minister Gabriel Attal himself. The finance bill provides for an increase of 3.9 billion euros in funds allocated to the largest ministry and brings the first state budget to 63.6 billion euros, or 29% more than in 2017.

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This increase results almost entirely from salary measures announced in recent months and which will apply for the first time over a full year in 2024. As planned, 1.9 billion euros are dedicated to “unconditional” salary increases for teachers, which come into force in September 2023. The envelope allocated to the teaching pact, this system offering new missions in exchange for additional remuneration, is 900 million euros over the year. The revaluation of the index point of all civil servants from July 2023 to the amount of 1.5% and the new measures planned for January 2024 also have an impact on the national education budget, the State’s largest employer, at the level of of 1.2 billion euros.

These measures, on a scale not seen in more than thirty years, have enabled a significant catch-up in salaries at the start of their careers (tenured teachers now start at 2,100 euros net compared to around 1,700 in 2020). But they were burdened by inflation of 5.2% in 2022 then 4.9% in 2023, and have not made up for the decline of recent decades in mid-career. While all the teaching unions, with whom Gabriel Attal has initiated consultations on the attractiveness of the profession, are calling for continued increases, no new envelope is planned for this purpose in 2024. “We will continue to work on this progression and these mid-career developments”however ured the minister on Wednesday.

Removal of positions

The 2024 budget also provides 467 million euros for rewarding internships in vocational high schools, and 20 million euros to increase the target of young people covered by the universal national service to 80,000, compared to 64,000 in 2023. .

In terms of human resources, national education shows an increase of 580 jobs. It is supported by the creation of 3,000 additional full-time equivalents of support workers for students with disabilities, who will also be upgraded. This “employment plan” nevertheless masks the elimination of 2,500 teaching positions in 2024, after 1,500 in 2023, which the ministry justifies by the drop in the number of students to the tune of 83,000 at the start of the 2024 school year.

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