France opens its first crèche that denies the difference between girls and boys

Publié le : 12 March 2013

 After Sweden, which has widely developed crèches "which do not make a difference between boys and girls," it is the turn of France, where the first crèche based on this model has opened in Saint-Ouen, just north of Paris. With the opening of the Bourdarias crèche, "the assumed objective" of the government is to "combat the ‘sexist’ prejudices in education in order to promote male/female equality. According to the Minister for Women’s Rights, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, and the Minister for the Family, Dominique Bertinotti, what is at stake is “the freedom of children, under pressure from the cultural models based on the differentiation of the sexes." Hence, it is now "out of the question […] to propose girls’ games to little girls’ and boys’ games to little boys."           

Dominique Bertinotti is also in favour of "bringing changes into the training of all pre-school professionals to raise their awareness of the issue” and she “welcomes the initiatives already taken to promote non-differentiation in their practices."        
The journalist explains that "since April 2009, the teams of the Bourdarias crèche, trained with a Swedish specialist, have practiced this pedagogy improperly called ‘egalitarian activity’." So the little girls are not encouraged to play with dolls or the little boys with construction games: "instead, they are encouraged to switch roles, even if means forcing the children to go against their wishes." Thus, "when the little girls play at being princess," the personnel explain that they try to "widen the horizon of the princess by proposing construction games, but without stopping them from playing at being a princess." The child psychiatrist Stéphane Clerget comments: "we need to propose to each child to be a boy or girl in their own way, without denying the difference between the sexes as do the partisans of gender theory." But the journalist points out that "what is at work here is indeed gender theory, which is wrongly called a theory because in no way does it help us to grasp reality but rather to contradict it." She adds: "the Bourdarias crèche is part of the overall project of the government to adapt the education models in order to promote the non-differentiation of the sexes from the cradle on.

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