Brigitte Macron, guest of honour at the first forum for secondary school pupils

Strasbourg, France 13 June 2022
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Brigitte Macron, guest of honour at the first forum for secondary school pupils

Four hundred youngsters had the opportunity to talk at length with Brigitte Macron today at the first-ever Forum for secondary school pupils dedicated to living together. School bullying and cyberbullying were the focus of the discussion, during which Ms Macron mentioned the existence of the ambassadors programme, which helps to better detect and raise awareness of cases of bullying, and also of platforms for listening to children and teenagers. The young participants were able to share their concerns and discuss how to prevent and combat harassment.

The Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, stressed that protecting  human rights, which was central to the Organisation's mission, also meant guaranteeing the right to education, the right to be free from discrimination and freedom of expression - rights that secondary school pupils were able to exercise by sharing their experiences at the forum. Organised within the framework of the World Forum for Democracy, in partnership with the Association for Access to the Law for Children and Young People (THEMIS), the event brought together some 400 youngsters from Alsace. Having worked on the subject of living together at school with their teachers, they presented their initiatives in the Council of Europe hemicycle in the form of a public-speaking competition.

The forum was chaired by Josiane Bigot, honorary judge and president of THEMIS; the cartoonist  Laurent Salles and the rapper Le Daron also had discussions with the young people and provided artistic content related to the theme.