A cheeky French mayor has enrolled 15 sheep to a primary school after fears that central government officials would close classes due to the lack of students.
The mayor of Crets en Belledonne, which is in the Isere department in south-eastern France, at the foot of the Alps, is trying to make sure the government do not close down his school’s classes. A local herder showed up with his dog and the 15 sheep to help boost the number of pupils at the school.
One of the sheep was called “Baa-Bete” and another was called “Saute-Mouton” (‘leapfrog’ in French) and the students, parents and teachers were in attendance to welcome their new classmates to the school with a hilarious ceremony to mark their enrollment, during which their birth certificates were presented so that they could “register”.
The move, designed to draw attention to the village’s plight, comes after dwindling numbers of pupils led to the existence of the classes being threatened. Indeed, the school was reportedly told that it faced one of its classes closing when numbers fell from 266 to 261 pupils.
Journalist Valentine Letesse shared these images from France Bleu on Twitter, adding that 65 sheep had also been set loose in the playground. She also said that “Shaun” would be attending the CM2 class (which is roughly a Year-5 class in the UK).
Gaelle Laval, one of the parents who organised the protest move, was quoted in local media as saying: “Now we won’t have to close any classes.”
It is unclear if the education authority, who has been accused of being more interested in statistics than the well-being of the children, are reconsidering their decision.