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"We occupy Sciences Po because Macron Graduated from here, and we do not want to end up like him"

Translated Sunday 6 May 2018

The students who met in a General Assembly at Sciences Po the 17th April have collectively taken the decision to peacefully occupy the university’s main building until such time as is necessary.

This decision stands until the ORE law and all other anti-social and racist laws brought by this government (loi d’asile and loi d’immigration, laws against the civil service, etc…), and those which have been prepared by several legislatures. In light of this vast neo-liberal and racist undertaking which has been mounted on all fronts by Macron, we consider it essential to mobilise in a concrete way by blocking the centres of wealth and knowledge production.

As students of Sciences Po, some will say we shouldn’t have a voice in the current student movement against selective higher education, because our university is by it’s nature selective: we believe that our university is the testing ground for the neo-liberal and racist education policies like those which the government is organizing today.
Despite the measures put in place to encourage diversity, Sciences Po gives us a glimpse of what higher education will look like if we let Macron have his way. Access to this university remains incredibly unequal, a social selection which is reinforced during our education here due to the academic and pressures experienced. Added to this are considerable sexist, racist, and classist violence reproduced by the institution as well as by the student and staff bodies, and no action is taken about this.

What’s more, occupying Sciences Po is extremely symbolic: as the university where Emmanuel Macron and numerous members of his parliamentary majority studied, this highlights the academic and symbolic roots of the dominant racist neo-liberal ideology, which surface as much in the management of the university as in the content of the teaching.

Numerous multinational companies intervene in our university so that their exploitative practices, including exploitation of workers, the appropriation of natural resources from the Global South, human rights violations and the destruction of the planet, are praised in our classes. With mandatory neo-liberal economics classes in first year, neocolonial classes on entrepreneurship in Africa, on the law of oil in the Energy Masters, on the best way to punish workers in the Human Resources Masters… our university is full of these modules, which aim to train zealous high-level civil servants for a liberal authoritarian regime and the white-collar delinquents who continually reinforce their own positions.

For these reasons, we call on all students disgusted by the politics of Macron, Mion and their allies to join us to make Sciences Po a place which is open to all, students, the unemployed, those in precarious work, workers, migrants and refugees, with or without papers, in order to break this shrine to the unjust, unequal and elitist teaching which they are trying to impose on us.

We, the students of Sciences Po in the General Assembly:

- wish above all to specify that the security staff are in no way implicated in our mobilisation, and that no sanction against them will be tolerated.
demand the non-recognition of absences for the days of the demonstrations, so that everyone can attend and organise for their rights.

- act on the fact that the power the hands of an elite, and that the way things are set up are unfortunately very effective at avoiding change. Also, we demand that Frederic Mion, director of the IEP, use all the networks at his disposal to ensure the withdrawal of the proposed laws which we condemn. If his orders are enough to put them into effect, two or three phone class will suffice to curb them.

- invite academics and teacher to consider and discuss with us in order to construct a new pedagogy and to decolonize our education. Academics in precarious employment, victims of the same systems which lead to selection today, are demanding that their classes be paid, even though they are unaware of the occupation.
Today we are occupying Sciences Po to obstruct the production of the dominant knowledge systems which form the foundations of our current system which are classist, racist and sexist.

We are occupying Sciences Po to obstruct the reproduction of liberal elites, those who select at our borders and universities, who privatise the country and put the most vulnerable at risk.

We are occupying Sciences Po because we will no longer listen the litany of your established theories, which leave no space for critical learning and stifle any possibility of inventing another form of knowledge for another world.

We are occupying Sciences Po against their controls and their cameras, and with our desire to make our university a place of exchange and emancipation. Against their neo-management, we affirm solidarity, self-organisation and a concrete and effective resistance against all forms of oppression.

We are occupying Sciences Po in support of all refugees and migrants, notably those who are occupying Building A of Paris 8 university and their demand of general regularization.

We are occupying Sciences Po because Macron came out of it, and we don’t want to end up like him.

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