The French high commissioner in French Polynesia, Richard Didier, says Paris may organise a referendum on education amid a dispute with the administration in Tahiti over the placement of teachers.
This follows last month's outburst by the French Polynesian vice-president, Antony Geros, who likened a French challenge of the French Polynesian education minister a declaration of war.
The minister sought to place a number of local teachers in local schools - a move the French education authorities objected to.
They want to send some of them to French schools in line with the prerogative of Paris to allocate posts to teachers on its payroll.
Mr Didier has now suggested to ask the population in a referendum on whether France should take over the education sector.