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Academic activities > Science Education > Overview and Presentation


The Académie des sciences is extremely vigilant about to the quality of science education and strongly recommends that the discoveries and developments of modern science become part of the cultural background we need today.

To implement this mission, the Academy has instated:
- an Academic Delegation for Teaching and Training; - an Academic Committee for Science Education; - a series of activities aimed to promote scientific investigation in elementary schools (since 1996) known as La main à la pâte.

In addition to these activities, it is noteworthy that many Members have been involved and have participated in actions and events that concern education in general, i.e., drawing on all the scientific domains represented in the Academy.

The Academy, in 2005, set up a special Academic Delegation for Education and Training (DEF) with the remit to represent the Academy in all areas where studies, debate and activities related to assessing quality and the future of science education in France arise. The Member of the French Académie des sciences in charge of the DEF is Christian AMATORE.

Presentation of the Academic Delegation for Education and Training (DEF)
The Academic Delegation for Education and Training (DEF) is empowered by a 4-year (renewable) tripartite contract signed by the President of the Academy, the Minister for Education and the Minister for Higher Education and Research. The initial contract was signed in 2005 and renewed in Feb. 2009.

The Delegation works in close liaison with the Academic Committee for Science Education, with the national Academy of technologies of France (NATF), with the mission of ensuring that both the scientific and technological aspects are addressed and handled appropriately and performing its tasks in close connexion with the other Academies of the Institut de France (so that the scientific dimensions be integrated into a global cultural format).

Alongside the Academic Delegation for International Affairs, the DEF represents the Academy in international co-operation schemes and in exchanges programs with other foreign Academies which show a similar interest in ensuring the quality of science education and teaching, in Europe and elsewhere in the world.

The DEF policy orientation today aims essentially to:
- the teaching of science in primary school, secondary college and upper school Lycée in France;
- training of those teachers who teach science subjects in their classes.
To attain its objectives, notably those that relate to the La main à la pâte (at primary and secondary school levels), the DEF implements along lines agreed with the Academy, with the National Institute for Pedagogical Research (INRP), with the Ecole normale supérieure (ENS Paris) and the Ecole normale supérieure of Lyon (ENS Lyon). There is also an ad hoc Committee for experts outwith the Academy.


Member in charge of the DEF : Christian AMATORE - - Tel.: (+33) 1 44 41 45 62
Deputy to the Member in charge of the DEF : Béatrice AJCHENBAUM-BOFFETY - - Tel.: (+33) 1 44 41 43 89

La main à la pâte

Primary School

David JASMIN - - Tel.: (+33) 1 58 07 65 95
Xavier PERSON - - Tel. : (+33) 1 58 07 65 97

Secondary School

Bruno DEY - - Tel. : (+33) 1 44 41 45 65
Katia ALLEGRAUD - - Tel. : (+33) 1 44 41 45 65
Béatrice SALVIAT - - Tel. : (+33) 1 44 41 45 66

The Académie des sciences is one of the five Académies that together constitute the Institut de France - Legal provisions - INTRANET - [ Updated 11/10/11 ]
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