Refugees give bad marks to poor quality integration courses

learn-Dutch-languageMany refugees in the Netherlands are unhappy with the quality of the integration courses they have to undergo and say some schools are only in it for the money, according to research by current affairs show EenVandaag.

The programme questioned 160 people who had been given a residency permit and had begun the integration programme. Most were Syrian men under the age of 40.

Over half (56%) said the quality of the courses is not up to scratch. ‘I get just two hours a week and that is not enough,’ one refugee said. Another told EenVandaag that the classroom based course ‘is called an integration course but I miss contact with the Netherlands.’

Since 2013, refugees have had to pay for the courses themselves and can borrow up to €10,000 from student loan agency DUO to fund lessons.

Earlier this year social affairs minister Lodewijk Asscher said he would look into how the quality of integration courses for immigrants can be properly monitored, following questions about the lack of controls on companies with the ‘Blik op Werk’ trade mark.

The ‘Blik op Werk’ trade mark was introduced several years ago in an effort to weed out cowboys. Immigrants can only get a government loan to pay for their integration course if they go to an approved school. has been free for 12 years, but now we are asking our readers to help. Your donation will enable us to keep providing you with fair and accurate news and features about all things Dutch.
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