Excerpt:

Schools across France marked the country's first "day of laïcité" (secularism) on Wednesday, part of government efforts to promote French values in the wake of gruesome – and homegrown – terrorist attacks.

When France woke up to the threat of homegrown terrorism following the Charlie Hebdo shootings in January of this year, the spotlight was cast on French schools and their supposed failure to instill Republican values in French citizens.

The deadly rampage by Islamist gunmen was seen as a callous attack on the cherished principles of secularism and freedom of speech, carried out by Frenchmen led astray by a hateful ideology.


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