Parents can choose their secondary school from tomorrow
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    Parents can choose their secondary school from tomorrow

    Credit: Belga

    The traditional registration procedure for the first year of secondary school in the Brussels-Wallonia Federation will start on Monday. 

    50,000 pupils will start secondary school in September. Parents have been receiving the application form over the last few weeks. 

    They have until the 6th of March to submit them to their chosen school. The chronological order of the submissions during these three weeks is not important. Therefore, a form that was submitted on the 10th of February will have no priority over one that was submitted on the 6th of March. 

    The form asks parents to select their first choice of school for the 2020 school year, as well as further choices if their first choice is full. They can put up to ten choices on the form. 

    As last year, only the first choice has to be on the submitted from. The subsidiary choices can be submitted (and modified up until the 6th of March if required) via an application specially developed by the education administration (the Ciri Parents application). 

    This application allows them to follow their progress on the waiting list online and means they can get a response from the Inter-network Registration Commission (CIRI) more quickly. 

    At the end of the three-week period, the schools where the number of applications is higher than 102% of the number of available spaces will draw up a ranking table of the applications they have received. 

    The allocation of spaces at the most popular schools is based on a series of mainly geographic criteria, such as the distance between the school and the child’s home and the primary school they went to. 

    Schools must reserve a percentage of their spaces for disadvantaged children, known as the “low social-economic index.” 

    The new registration procedure, introduced in 2010, makes it objective for everyone, but it is not without its challenges. 

    The new rainbow majority in the Brussels-Wallonia Federation announced its intention to retire the registration decree last September and replace it with a new process. 

    Sarah Johansson

    The Brussels Times