Choosing a school can be difficult. Go to the information or parent events where you will get a host of tips.
Both the VGC and the LOP organise information events (in Dutch) for parents about the registration and application procedure prevailing within Dutch-speaking elementary education in Brussels. Several experts will inform you about:
- Dutch-speaking elementary education in Brussels,
- high-quality edcuation,
- the registration and application procedure.
These information events are free but you do need to register.
Get to know the schools
Would you like to get to know the schools? You can do so:
- together with other parents ('groepsbezoeken' in following overview)
- individually: by appointment, contact the school to make arrangements to visit it ('telefonisch contact' in following overview)
Overview of the schools
At www.onderwijsinbrussel.be you will find an overview of all the Dutch-speaking schools in Brussels. Via this website, you can also apply for a school guide which contains the contact details of all the Dutch-speaking schools in Brussels, including the course offer of the secondary schools.
Any tips on how to choose a school?
Select a number of schools when you go about applying for a place. Which schools should you choose and why? A few tips:
- Would you like your child to attend Dutch-speaking or French-speaking education?
- Look for information about education in Brussels: What schools are there? What educational networks are there? What support do the schools receive? You will also find out all those details at the information events.
- What is your idea of the ideal school? For instance: is the school nearby? What is its pedagogical approach? What is the attitude and style of the teachers and management? How can I, as a parent, participate? Does the school offer before and after-school care?
- At www.onderwijsinbrussel.be you will find an overview of all the Dutch-speaking schools by municipality. Each school has a fact sheet with practical information.
- Collect information about the schools. Go to the school's website. Make sure to read the following information:
- Pedagogical vision: this is the school's vision of teaching and education. It contains information about the pedagogical and teaching methods.
- School regulations: how is the school organised? How does the school organise homework, diaries, reports, care…? What costs could you incur?
- Class blogs and photographs: some websites also feature activities and photographs.
- Read the school's full inspection report. This has been compiled by the Flemish Ministry of Education. Find the report on your school at www.ond.vlaanderen.be/doorlichtingsverslagen.
- Visit the school: you will get a sense of the atmosphere and meet teachers and management. Pay attention to the things that really matter to you. Here is a list of questions you can ask during a visit (in Dutch). Some schools can be visited in group.
- Talk to parents in your area who are also looking for a school. They may have visited other schools already. Or they may have different experiences. Go to the parent event(s) in your area and meet other parents.
- Also talk to the children who are going to the school already and to their parents. Do the children enjoy going to school? Do the parents have any comments? It is through their stories that you will get to know the style of the school.
- Make a choice. On the basis of these elements, choose a number of schools. Also check out the number of places these schools still have available and their priority criteria. And don't forget to read the section 'How do I maximise my child's chances of getting a place in a school?'
How do I maximise my child's chances of getting a place in a school?
Whether your child will get a place in a certain school will depend on:
- The number of places that are available at the school
- The number of places that are available per priority group
- The number of children that applies for a place for this year of birth/grade
- The priority group of the other children who applied for a place
- The school's position in your list of favourite schools
- The number of schools you choose
- The distance between the school and your child's domiciliation address or your work address.
A few tips:
- Put a school that has plenty of availability in your priority group and is close to home or your place of work down as your 1st choice.
- Choose several schools.