Twenty-four day-care centres in the Flemish suburbs of Brussels do not meet the language standards imposed by the Flemish government in its new decree on childcare facilities, as illustrated by a Kind en Gezin study. If institutions do not reach the required standards by March 2017, they run the risk of losing their license, said Kind en Gezin, confirming information obtained from Flemish Ring-TV. The decree particularly stipulates that the head of the day-care facility and at least one member of the supervisory staff must have a good command of Dutch. Some municipalities with day-care facilities have already protested against this measure.
According to Leen Du Bois, spokesman for Kind en Gezin, this requirement is crucial to ensure guidelines can be understood by managers and staff are able to communicate with parents in Dutch.
These are also the reasons why the Constitutional Court recognized the language requirement as a necessity, despite complaints from the French-speaking part of the country.
In the future, Kind en Gezin will monitor the 24 nurseries concerned in order for them to reach the required language standards. “We will ask them to test their language level (…) and encourage them to follow a language course. They should be able to get up to speed with their language skills by 2017, and we sincerely hope we will not have to revoke any of their licences”’ said Leen still du Bois.
Lars Andersen (Source: Belga)