Dutch-speaking school in Brussels to close after one year due to ‘lack of budget’
Share article:
Share article:

Dutch-speaking school in Brussels to close after one year due to ‘lack of budget’

This means that the children of the small primary school will have to spend the rest of their school careers in the container classes. Credit: Flickr/Merel Van Hoorebeke

The Dutch-language school that opened in the Brussels municipality of Berchem-Sainte-Agathe in 2018 will be closed due to a lack of budget, according to the municipality council.

The primary school was opened to provide more places offering Dutch-speaking education in the largely French-speaking capital city, even though the former municipality council received a lot of opposition for the initiative.

In four container classes on the site of a kindergarten school, 36 pupils are currently taught in the first and second year of primary education. Over time, the four temporary containers were supposed to be replaced by a new school building.

However, the current municipality council said that it cannot find any land to put the building for the new school. “We have tried to buy a piece of land ourselves, but we concluded that the money is just not there,” said Joël Riguelle, the mayor of Berchem-Sainte-Agathe, reports Bruzz.

This means that the children of the small primary school will have to spend the rest of their school careers in the container classes. Additionally, as Belgian pupils have to follow six years of primary education, only one extra first year can start, as the school will have to permanently close its doors in June 2027.

“We have been working on opening a new Dutch-language school for years. Both Peter Decabooter (a former Alderman) and I have left the council of Aldermen due to the opposition to this initiative,” said Vincent Riga, former Alderman in Berchem-Sainte-Agathe, reports Bruzz.

However, the municipality did everything it could to keep the school open, according to the mayor. “We are just running out of money. We are investing in the Dutch-speaking crèches and we are looking for solutions for the Dutch-speaking Music Academy, which is losing classrooms in the municipalities of Asse and Dilbeek. Additionally, classes are being added to the other Dutch-speaking networks in the municipality,” Riguelle added.

“A piece of land has been bought for a future French-speaking secondary school recently, even though there are no concrete plans for the school yet. Yet, they do not invest money in a dossier that has been dragging on for so long,” said Maude van Gyseghem, the former Flemish Alderman, reports Bruzz.

Maïthé Chini
The Brussels Times

Latest news

Experts call for more widespread use of masks as figures rise
As coronavirus figures continue to rise, Belgian Prime Minister Alexander De Croo has suggested that people return to wearing masks when indoors with ...
Belgium wants to recover €420 million in wrongfully paid out coronavirus aid
The Belgian State intends to recover €420 million of unduly paid Covid-19 aid, La Libre Belgique reported on Thursday. The electronic Council of ...
Why the fight for transgender rights is polarising Europe 
Year after year, Samuel De Schepper would ask Santa Claus to bring him a penis for Christmas. Born female and attending an all girl’s Catholic ...
New offshore wind farm officially opened
Despite being operational since the end of 2020, the SeaMade offshore wind farm was officially inaugurated on Wednesday by Prime Minister Alexander ...
Contact tracers have no time for calls, only texts, amid rising cases
Contract tracers will no longer make phone calls to the high-risk contacts of people who test positive for the coronavirus beginning from Wednesday, ...
Belgium holds on to top spot in FIFA rankings despite recent losses
Once again, Belgium's Red Devils have held onto their position at the top of the world football rankings, according to an update released by the ...
Proximus pushes for high-speed internet in Brussels and Wallonia
Fifteen municipalities in Wallonia should soon have access to high-speed internet through the rollout of fibre optics in the region, telecoms giant ...
Why Belgium is regulating sex work
After decades of confusing rules and hypocritical policy, Belgium is finally regulating sex work by removing prostitution from the criminal law. ...
World’s largest chocolate warehouse opens in Flanders
On Thursday, Barry Callebaut – the largest global chocolate processor and manufacturer – opened the world's largest chocolate warehouse in Lokeren, ...
Belgium in Brief: Equal Opportunity To Dance
There's a phrase where I'm from, more often said in jest nowadays, but it came to my mind this morning: "Ye dancin'?" (Are you dancing?), one ...
Farmer discovers cocaine in banana boxes bought in Brussels
A Flemish farmer who purchased boxes of bananas at the market in Brussels on Tuesday came home to discover large amounts of cocaine packed among the ...
Changes to speed cameras increase likelihood of a ticket
Changes to the way speed cameras work in Flanders and Wallonia will increase the likelihood of receiving a ticket when cars pass them above the ...