by Simon Jahnich, France
In 2007 Nicolas Sarkozy right after being elected President announced that school zoning regulations would be first relaxed and then dropped altogether. This action was presented as a measure to foster the free choice of families and to create new opportunities for families from lower economic backgrounds, living in decayed urban areas. Surprisingly, this measure was also part of the programme of the socialist candidate. In the following lines, the text first discuss how this consensus raises issues about the context that made the end of school zoning so tempting for both the right- wing party and the left-wing party (I). Second, it also raises questions as to the aims of such a decision (II). Finally, the text discusses a number of aissues concerned with the consequences of this decision for the French school system (III).