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Living in the Languedoc:      The Education System

The French education system, mainly state run, is regarded one of best in the World.  It has achieved this simply by declining to follow trendy half-witted theoreticians such as those who have wrecked the British state system over the last generation or two. 
The main disadvantage of the French schools in general, and Languedoc schools in particular, is that they still rely heavily on rote learning and similar old-fashioned methods, and all attempts at enquiry, original thought or creativity are severely discouraged right up to and including undergraduate level.  The system is therefore particularly good at turning out ready-made, loyal, unquestioning state functionaires, and indeed could almost have been designed for exactly that purpose. 
Under the French Educational System most French schools are run by the state.  State schools include Nursery, Primary and Secondary establishments.  In Secondary schools children may repeat or move up a year.  This means that particularly slow ones may have to repeat a yearly bright ones may skip a year.  Various groups of children, including disabled children, disruptive children and children specialising in particular subjects are catered for in Special Schools
Private Schools exist but they are mainly bilingual or religious establishments.  Education in France is still primarily a tool of the state, designed to help build a nation out of many disparate regions.  The heavy centralising hand is therefore evident in almost every aspect of education, and not only the sylabus.  In France, more than in English speaking countries, Higher Education provides the key to a successful career, especially in the state sector.  Most teachers in France are state employees (functionaires). 
In recent years some moves have been made to devolve powers from Paris to the Regions and even lower levels of local government.  Regional and other devolved powers are still limited.  Trends in education include continued devolution and, as in other countries, increased numbers of children staying in education longer. 
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Languedoc Schools