Compared to the 2020-2021 school year, dropouts for the 2021-2022 school year increased by 28% in francophone Belgium – the regions of Wallonia and Brussels – reports Le Soir. In secondary schools, this number has been even greater — 56%.
In 2020-2021, absenteeism had already almost doubled when compared to the pre-pandemic 2019-2020 school year, with 45% in Wallonia and 36% in Brussels, according to information released by the Education Committee of the Wallonia-Brussels Federation Parliament Monday.
"This can only alert us to the current state of young people affected by the health crisis, with profound repercussions not only on school attendance but also on mental health, which is strongly linked to it," Education Minister Caroline Désir said.
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At the end of this school year, 63,939 pupils, including 34,856 in ordinary secondary schools, had at least nine half-days of absence.
There were 49,993 a year ago, including 22,348 in secondary school. This shows the continuous impact of the Covid-19 pandemic since the pandemic began over two years ago.