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French President calls on pupils to stop bullying

School pupils have been urged by President Macron to stand up to bullying.

In a video on social media network Snapchat, he encouraged pupils to put themselves in the shoes of a victim.

“Either you continue to say nothing, smile from time to time, join in the mockery and ...  you become an accomplice … or you sit beside them, stretch out your hand and try to understand,” he said.

He was speaking on National Bullying Day, Journée nationale de lutte contre le harcèlement scolaire, held each November.

It is estimated that one pupil in 10 is bullied in school, outside the grounds or online.

This year 10 measures have been adopted to try to help.

Six education authorities are piloting a scheme in which a trained team will be on hand to raise awareness of, and deal with, bullying issues.

Anyone who witnesses or suffers bullying is encouraged to call a free hotline on 3020. Net Ecoute on 0800 200 000 is for reporting online bullying.


  • The student union Unef said it has been warning of worsening student conditions and that studies show 8% attempted suicide in 2018. It says student poverty rose 2.8% in 2019.

It comes after a 22-year-old undergraduate set himself alight to highlight his money problems and to protest at education policies. He suffered 90% burns and is in a ‘critical’ state in hospital in Lyon.

A report by the top-up insurance firm LMDE shows that although 89% of students polled said they were in good health, 54% said they were depressed or anxious.

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