Netherlands: Multi-ethnic schools not a priority
7 February 2011
“The government accepts the possibility of “black” schools,” a Dutch expression denoting schools where a majority of the students are from immigrant backgrounds, reports Volkskrant. In an interview with the daily, Education Minister Marja van Bijsterveldt explains that the fight to promote ethnic diversity in schools will no longer be a priority. As it stands, certain Dutch municipal authorities oblige parents to send their children to local schools, a measure that is designed to ensure racial integration in the classroom. The Christian-democrat minister insists that the main priority will now be the “the quality of teaching, which is more important than than the fact that a child is enrolled in a black or white school” – a position, which Volkskrant notes marks a “significant shift” in multicultural policy in the Netherlands.