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Montpellier. National School of Architecture: heavier suspension for Professor Brion

Students from the Montpellier school of architecture denounced the unhealthy climate on the walls (Facebook)

The shaking affair Montpellier National School of Architecture -ENSAM- is experiencing a new episode: the national discipline section of the Ministry of Culture delivered its decision on Thursday concerning Professor Jacques Brion, who traveled to Paris on April 1 to be heard there, after having read the IGAC report. “At the end of this hearing, and on the basis of the mission report of the General Inspectorate of Cultural Affairs -IGAC- for alleged acts of moral harassment, my client, Mr. Brion, was notified of an order of suspension for a period of 9 months from the date of notification, in addition to a precautionary measure already carried out for a period of 4 months ”, his lawyer said on Monday, Maryse Pechevis of the Montpellier Bar.

Lawyer Maryse Pêchevis defends Jacques Brion.
Lawyer Maryse Pêchevis defends Jacques Brion. (©Facebook)

“Incomprehensible decision”

“This decision is not only unfair – in substance and form – but also incomprehensible, especially when the decision decree itself specifies” that no flagrant situation of moral harassment has been identified. There is much to fear that this sanction is in reality motivated only by the desire to “make an example” whereas the situations of instability of schools of architecture have been known and denounced for many years. In agreement with my client, a decision has been taken to contest this suspension decree, ”she adds. According to Maryse Pêchevis, “Indeed, at no time, neither in the way in which the IGAC mission was carried out, nor in the conduct of the disciplinary section, did we have proof of a fair procedure, clear and impartial. We particularly regret that the numerous requests from the teaching staff of ENSAM and from the students in favor of a rapid return of Mr. Brion to the school were not heard and taken into account. Also, we will file as quickly as possible a suspensive appeal in summary, before seizing the administrative court, as for several points of this file and the procedure ”.

Ongoing investigation

The lawyer deplores that, “It is to be feared that this show of force on the part of the administration of the Ministry of Culture will only have the effect of consolidating in its approach the minority of internal and external people wishing to destabilize the ‘ENSAM, thus adding to the situation of chronic crisis that all architecture schools are experiencing. It is also to be feared that many elements of the teaching staff of the schools – and of the ENSAM in particular – will find it impossible to do their work properly, for fear of being in turn victims of professional demolition work, personal and media that my client suffers ”.

According to our information, the director of ENSAM at the time, who recently joined the private sector, completely escapes IGAC investigations and therefore alleged disciplinary sanctions, since he no longer exercises there. The name of the former director is however cited in the proceedings. Suddenly, only Professor Jacques Brion is targeted. In addition to this administrative inquiry, a judicial inquiry is in progress, supervised by the prosecutor’s office of Montpellier, a procedure opened in preliminary. Numerous hearings have already taken place and documents seized for the needs of the investigations.

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