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A military school that has become a public educational institution

(B2) A silent revolution is about to take place on the 450 hectares of air base no. 701 which houses the Air School in Salon de Provence. The latter has just ended its academic year, with the traditional ceremony of handing over the 'dagger' to Air cadets

The French patrol above the school for the handing over of daggers on July 5 (credit: Patrouille de France / DICOD)

Since January, the school has in fact become a public establishment of a scientific, cultural and professional nature (EPCS). A decree published in December 2018 attests to this. The school remains under the authority of the Ministry of Defense, but it acquires legal autonomy, where previously it was only a military unit dependent on the human resources department. This autonomy will allow it to manage its budget more independently — in particular it will be necessary to pay the approximately 270 people (permanent or contract teachers, assistants, etc.) who form the backbone of the school. This will be done next year.

This new status will also allow it to forge stronger links with other educational establishments in France, to open up more to external audiences, to develop new modules, new diplomas in initial or continuing training, etc. . There is already a cooperation developed with Science Po Aix for joint masters (in political science). But its promoters intend to develop this axis with other establishments in Europe.

NB: The air school is not the only military school to have changed status. The naval school, for example, reached this milestone in 2017. But Saint Cyr is still resisting…


(1) I was there last week to give a course on European defense, the European army

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).