Bilingual secondary education gets a boost

The education ministry is backing a project to allow five trade schools (vmbo) to offer education in both Dutch and English from the next academic year. A further 16 trade schools will join in from 2011.

At least 30% of the lessons will be taught in English with the aim of strengthening pupils’ position on the jobs market.
‘It is important that future welders, nurses and hotel workers speak good English or German,’ said education minister Marja van Bijsterveldt. ‘Craftsmanship does not stop at national borders.’
At least 110 vwo and havo highs chools currenlty offer a bilingual stream – most often a combination of Dutch an English, although several have opted for German, the Volkskrant reports.