Tear down this wall! building a united community in brussels based on multilingualism in schools
04 02 2016
A series of practical recommendations to ensure, short term, greater cohesion among French- and Dutch-speaking school communities in Brussels.
What is it about?
The Friday Group, a think tank for young people from various backgrounds financed by the King Baudoin Foundation, has deployed a geo-localisation analysis to identify 90 schools in Brussels that are divided by a wall. The school grounds, dining rooms, and corridors are physically divided by walls, fences, or red lines into a section for children who are educated in French, and another section for children who have lessons in Dutch. They estimate that there is a real, but for most people invisible, wall running through Brussels that is more than two kilometres long. About 30,000 children are confronted with these physical barriers on a daily basis. But it’s not only the children that the wall divides into two camps. The regulative guidelines are also not in harmony with each other, and this has an adverse effect on Brussels’ school going children. That’s why the Friday Group has launched a number of concrete recommendations that could improve the situation in the short term. They also call for more radical and structural collaboration between Dutch-speaking and French-speaking education in Brussels.
Brieuc Van Damme