French government raises stakes on school security after pupil points 'gun' at teacher

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A recent video showing a pupil pointing a pistol – later discovered to be fake - at his teacher in a school in France went viral. The government called an urgent meeting of senior ministers to work out a plan of action to tackle violence in France's schools, amid talk that the police might be asked to patrol in some establishments. Detailed policies are expected to be announced soon. But as Manuel Jardinaud and Faïza Zerouala report, this tough rhetoric, which recalls the days of Nicolas Sarkozy's presidency, has not gone down well with many teachers.

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It was a shocking scene and the video quickly went viral on the social networks. It showed a 15-year-old pupil taking aim at his teacher with a BB pistol at the Édouard-Branly secondary school at Créteil in the south-eastern suburbs of Paris on October 18th. The weapon turned out to be a fake but the teacher did not know that at the time. And since the video was first broadcast on October 20th it has provoked strong reaction in both the political and educational worlds.