ANPChildren from an AZC at a primary school
NOS Nieuws•vandaag, 15:04
Young asylum seekers should be able to receive lessons from unqualified teachers more often. Furthermore, if there is absolutely no other option, they have to spend fewer hours at school than other children. A new law that regulates this should come into force next school year.
Minister Dennis Wiersma sent his Temporary Newcomers in Education Act to the House of Representatives today. It contains proposals to prevent children of asylum seekers in particular from receiving education in the coming months.
At the moment, it is estimated that there are more than 2,000 newcomers in secondary education who are of compulsory school age who do not receive lessons because there is no place for them. And waiting lists are also increasing in primary education.
Wiersma wants this to change. In regions where there is no room for these young people of school age, ‘temporary newcomers’ facilities’ (tnvs) must be set up, which means that a number of important obligations in regular education can be deviated from.
Students in front of the class
For example, if a vacancy cannot be filled by a qualified teacher, students may also be put in front of the class. However, they are not allowed to teach core subjects such as Dutch and math. This exception already applies to Ukrainian children, for whom separate classes have been set up.
Furthermore, in emergencies, for example if too few staff are found, fewer lessons can be given than in regular education. However, students must always receive lessons for at least 12.5 hours per week, spread over three days. And at least ten teaching hours per week must be devoted to learning the Dutch language.
Treat with urgency
The new law obliges schools and municipalities to make annual agreements about a comprehensive range of education in the region, so that no school age is deprived of education. If they do not do so voluntarily, the minister can, in extreme cases, force school boards to arrange something for children who would otherwise fall by the wayside.
Wiersma asks the House of Representatives to urgently deal with his law. It must be adopted by 20 June at the latest in order to get it through the Senate in time. Otherwise, the law cannot enter into force until the new school year has already started.