Equal opportunities : the experience at Sciences Po

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In charge of the Égalité des chances et Diversité (Equal opportunities and diversity) programme, Institut des Études Politiques (nicknamed 'Sciences Po'), Paris

Seminar Social life | Thursday June 21, 2007 - 9h - 11h30

In 2001, the director of the institution for higher education Sciences Po, Richard Descoings, caused an uproar when he signed agreements relating to admission procedures with secondary schools which benefited from special education measures intended to positively discriminate and resolve social and educational difficulties in certain regions of France. At the present time, Sciences Po is collaborating with about fifty schools in poor suburbs, small and medium-sized towns and even in regions where industry is either non-existent or has been reduced. Using this scheme, nearly 300 students over a six-year period were recruited to attend Sciences Po, about one hundred of whom grew up in the département of Seine-Saint-Denis (north-east of Paris). In December 2005, after the riots in certain French suburbs, Richard Descoings decided to go one step further and launched the “experimental lycée” programme with 7 other institutions for higher education, 23 large companies and 4 secondary schools in the Seine-Saint-Denis département. According to Cyril Delhay, through these different experiences, the challenge is to spot student potential and make the most of it instead of judging them purely on their grades. Companies have developed a know-how in this field : the ministry of Education would do well to follow their example.

The entire article was written by:


This session was published in issue n°68 of the Journal de l'École de Paris du management, entitled Manager les différences.

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