The National Institute of Mathematical Sciences and their interactions reported an 8 % drop in the number of teacher-researchers in mathematics since 2020. ] with AFP
“The situation is very worrying and will be catastrophic if we do nothing.” It is by these words that the president of the CNRS, Antoine Petit, alerted Monday November 14 as to the state of mathematics in France, during From the opening in Paris to the Assizes of the discipline, which will become compulsory again for all high school students in the general sector from the start of the 2023 school year.
“At the heart of our society”
m. Petit mentioned the insufficient level of French students in the international PISA survey and the shortage of teachers in this matter. The National Institute of Mathematical Sciences and their interactions (Insmi), which depends on the CNRS, reported last week a “8 % drop in the number of teacher-researchers in mathematics since 2020”.
Assizes, which are held until Wednesday, must identify new mathematics – specialty needs in which France has reputation for excellence – and formulate proposals to respond. “The discipline is at the heart of our society, it is crucial to responding to the challenges,” said the Minister of Research, Sylvie Retailleau, citing the climate and environmental sciences, which require calculation and modeling capacities Mathematics ever more advanced, or “Living sciences for statistical data processing and epidemiological monitoring”.
A round table is devoted to societal questions in mathematics, where women are underrepresented from secondary education to research. The Minister of Education, Pap Ndiaye, estimated that “the future of French excellence in mathematics is largely on the side of the girls”. “Our objective is parity girls-gardens,” said the minister, who announced on Sunday the return of a “compulsory” teaching of the discipline for all high school students in 2023.
The speakers insisted on the importance of replacing mathematics at the heart of teaching, from an early age. “We will not be able to change things if the vision of mathematics does not change in society,” said France-Presse Hugo Duminil-Copin, winner in 2022 of the prestigious Fields medal. He considered it essential that everyone has a “minimum citizen” in this area, so that everyone “can face everyday life”.