Disinfo: At the age of 11, 40% of French pupils don’t know how to read or write


50% of French pupils don’t know that the Nazi regime capitulated on 8 May. They have no idea why this day is a national holiday in France. This is because history is badly taught. Pupils are not told a narrative that makes them love the history of their nation but they have to study documents and feel guilty. They are told that all French people were collaborators of the Nazis or that all French people were slavers. Moreover, ignorance is not limited to history, at the age of 11, 40% of French pupils don’t know how to read or write.


Recurrent Narrative that Western Europeans don't know the history of their country, don't feel proud and can't even read or write because the education system promotes ignorance and guilt.

The last evaluation available from October 2019, shows that 11.3% of pupils master very well proficiencies in French, 72.2% satisfactorily, 14.3% master weakly, 2.2% insufficiently. Thus the assertion that 40% cannot read or write is misleading.

Another standard evaluation is made at the age of 15 and is common to most countries to allow comparisons. The (PISA) evaluation examines what students know in reading, mathematics and science, and what they can do with what they know. The ranking of the last evaluation is from 2018 and shows that France is between Belgium and Portugal for reading abilities at 493 points. Just for comparison, Russian pupils got 479 points (the OECD mean score for reading is 487).


  • Reported in: Issue 196
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 24/04/2020
  • Language/target audience: French
  • Country: France
  • Keywords: education, Historical revisionism, WWII, Nazi/Fascist


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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