In early June, a private Catholic school in Tours banned two boys aged 4 and 6 from attending class because they were wearing skirts. Parents did not understand the diocesan center’s decision, saying it was “attached to respect for the codes governing society”.
At the Sainte-Jeanne-d’Arc school in Tours, skirts are reserved for little girls. The diocesan leadership settled the issue last week, after a meeting of parents of two young boys who were not admitted to class and separated from the rest of their classmates in early June. , because they wore skirts and dresses.
“At home, at the leisure center, in the park on the weekends, our 6 year old son likes to wear skirts or dresses. He likes sequins, varnish, princess costumes and mine second (4 years old) They also always wear it. They are very happy to be like that and that is no problem for us “, explained BFMTV.com Émelin, father of these two boys and a 4- old woman.
An “disproportionate” non -inclusion for parents
When her son asked her if she could wear a skirt to school, Émelin turned to the establishment, but received an initial rejection on the grounds that it was “impractical for sporting activities”. The parents complied and gave Bermuda shorts to their children, but quickly realized that their little friends were allowed to go in skirts. “We found it unfair so we asked the establishment again, which asked us to wait then never follow up”.
So faced with insulting her son, one May morning, she sent him to school wearing a skirt. But that same night, Émelin was called by the director in the presence of a psychologist who gave him the understanding that he “should take time to prepare his son before leaving in the morning”.
Rebelotte in early June, when the father of the family returned to dress his sons as they wished. That day, Émelin presented herself in a skirt at the school gate as a sign of acceptance. A scene that was immortalized on Friday June 3 by our colleagues from The New Republic. But that day, the two children were pushed away by some of their classmates, out of class, even at lunch. Their sister has the right to attend class.
“It bothers me that they are sidelined like that, seemingly completely different from my wife and me,” said Émelin, who regrets that education has to go through such gender stereotypes. “When we see what is now being done in terms of gender-neutral education in Nordic countries like Sweden, we say to ourselves that we are late in France”, as the couple said.
“Positions more suited to our time”
But the parents were received a few days later by Bernard Le Floch, the director of the diocesan center. A 30-minute conversation that Émilien considered “sterile” in the end in which the two parties could not reach an agreement, and that would convince Émelin and Roxane to put their three children in public to begin with. in the next school year.
“We were told that students had to go to school with ‘proper clothing’, and that wearing a skirt did not respect the establishment’s education project”, reported the student’s father, who was saddened by the establishment ” remain camped in positions that are more. adapted to our time, and could have gone to the voluntary removal of students “. “No one asked the lady how she was going to dress, nor the diocesan director about that,” he pointed out again.
Bernard Le Floch, who was contacted by BFMTV.com, acknowledged that the Sainte-Jeanne-d’Arc school’s internal regulations do not stipulate black and white that boys are prohibited from wearing skirts. “A regulation is never complete. In my 40-year career, this is the first time I have faced a situation like this”, explained the director of the diocesan center, who said he “would never think to write it. ” signature “.
“In a private place, they do what they want”
“Whether we like it or not, whether we regret it or not, we still have social codes today in France, dress codes”, Bernard Le Floch defended into our microphone, anxious to alleviate the situation, which nonetheless recognized that the term “‘ The right dress ’doesn’t mean much”.
“In the private area, they do what they want,” continues Bernard Le Floch, whose job is to coordinate all the Catholic establishments in the diocese of Tours. “In kindergarten, in the park, they dress as they like. We’re here, we’re asked to respect some rules, that’s all. To be codes no matter what.”
At the end of the meeting, the parents will therefore receive a handwritten letter by hand telling them that their sons will not be accepted into class wearing a skirt. The next day, the two men wore bermudas and shorts.
But a few days later, on the evening of Sunday June 12 to Monday June 13, the front of the school in Sainte-Jeanne-d’Arc was covered with posters with feminist slogans and tags saying that little boys also have the right to wear a skirt. or clothes if they like. “Stop having sex with our kids”, “I dress the way I want, there is no sexism in our schools!”, “Her body, her clothes, she chooses”, can we read. The slogans were quickly withdrawn by the establishment, according to the new republic.
Bernard Le Floch, when asked about this topic, “regrets and regrets that groups are taking advantage of this to convey messages unrelated to the starting situation”. According to him, the collective of the origin of these tags creates “the amalgam” and extrapolates “a particular situation that occurs between a family and an institution”.