Home Europe France PM Says State Will Sue Student In Headscarf Row

France PM Says State Will Sue Student In Headscarf Row

Gabriel Attal
Gabriel Attal

France prime minister Gabriel Attal has said that the government will sue a student for falsely accusing the teacher of hitting her for wearing a headscarf.

The incident took place on February 28 when three female students were asked to remove head scarf in school in accordance with French laws which bars students from wearing head scarfs.  Two complied, but the third did not and there was an altercation.

The teacher was then forced to resign following death threats issued on social media. The Paris school teacher’s name has not been made public. He recently announced his decision to resign in an email to colleagues at the Maurice Ravel Lycée in the 20th district of Paris.

“I have finally taken the decision to quit my functions. And out of concern for my own safety and that of the establishment,” he said as quoted by the BBC.

“I leave after seven years, rich and intense, spent at your side, and after 45 years in public education,” he added, thanking colleagues for their support.

In France, death threats to teachers are taken seriously. In 2020, Samuel Paty was decapitated on the street in a Paris suburb and in 2023 Dominique Bernard was killed at his school in Arras.

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The government has since detained two people in connection with the death threats. Since then the police presence has been beefed up around the school.

The investigations that followed found no evidence that the headteacher had struck the girl.

“The state… will always stand with these officials, those who are on the frontline faced with these breaches of secularism, these attempts of Islamist entryism in our education establishments,” he said.

Politicians from both left and right have expressed outrage at the incident.

“This government is incapable of protecting our schools,” said Marine Le Pen of the hard-right National Rally on X.

“It’s unacceptable. When a headteacher steps down because of death threats, it is a collective failure,” said Boris Vallaud of the Socialist Party.