Covid: “We have to keep the school open, it’s a given”, says Robert Ménard

Manon Fossat
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08:58, January 13, 2022

This Thursday, a large majority of educational staff went on strike to denounce “unmanageable” and “ineffective” health rules at school. On Europe Matin Thursday, the mayor of Béziers assured that the establishments must be kept open and said he was in agreement with this choice of the executive, but called for solutions to be put in place.


Less than 100 days before the presidential election, 75% of teachers will strike to denounce the health rules in force. A crisis that falls badly for Macronie, while its Minister of National Education is weakened and is the target of virulent criticism from teachers’ unions and the political opposition. Invited to Europe Matin on Thursday, the mayor of Béziers Robert Ménard felt that “we must keep the school open” but called for more help for municipalities to install CO2 sensors in establishments.

“We must keep the school open. We cannot blame this choice [à l’exécutif]. Either way, I wouldn’t blame him. It’s a given,” he said. “Ask parents if they are not happy that the schools are open. The teachers maybe less, but in any case for the parents, we all know that it’s Kafkaesque not to know what to do with it when we go to work”, launched the mayor of Béziers.

Solutions “which arrive a little late each time”

If he agrees with this choice of the government, Robert Ménard also said that there may be other solutions to be found. “CO2 sensors for example, why don’t we put them?” he asked. “We tested it, I’m going to put it in the establishments, but why are the mayors hesitating? Well for financial reasons”, judged the city councilor.

He explained that these devices, when they are of good quality, cost between 250 and 300 euros. “The State tells us that it will not be able to reimburse us for more than 50 euros. I have a town of 80,000 inhabitants and I can choose to pay despite the bill. But there are a whole bunch of municipalities that can’t do it,” he said. “And the FFP2 masks, why aren’t we distributing them to teachers? I know it costs more and it will come, but each time it comes a little late. Maybe that would calm the teachers to know the air quality in their class and take action. But we don’t.”

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