Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali attended, on Monday morning in Tunis, starting of the new school year at the Alaouia High School and Rue des Savants Primary School.
Escorted by Education Minister Abdellatif Abid, the PM extended thanks and consideration to the parents, pupils and the education members of staff, stressing that "Tunisia is secure in your hands and we count on youths' capacity to make a success of the Revolution, to make it a revolution of values, sciences, progress, technology and innovation.”
To the journalists' questions on the likelihood risks of attacks on pupils, Mr. Jebali said that "we should avoid sowing panic among school children and their parents, because the situation in the country is peaceful and reassuring, in spite of some signs of trouble and violence.”
Commenting on last Friday's events at the U.S. Embassy, he pointed out that the security situation is the same in all countries and what happened was not only proper to Tunisia, placing the blame on the person who had provoked the sensitivity of Muslims and on those people who had reacted violently. "Those people," he added, "are wrong and punishable by law.”
On the lack of maintenance in some establishments, the PM pointed out that the Education Ministry had launched important maintenance programmes targeting those educational institutions, and he called on civil society and the Education Ministry to join efforts to catch up the delays recorded, mainly in the inland regions.
During his visit, Mr. Jebali enquired about the concerns of education staff and their demands regarding the improvement of their working conditions, reinforcement of equipments and care for children from low-income families.
Teachers at the Alaouia High School stressed the need to review the teaching methods and national exams systems and to be associated in this.
They also called for increasing the number of security patrols in the vicinity of establishments to guarantee the pupils' safety.
Some two million pupils have joined, on Monday, the 6005 public primary and high schools nationwide.