Eindhoven primary school innovative new nursery class for expat toddlers

Published:  8 Jan at 6 PM
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Moving overseas as an expat family is a tough call, wherever the destination.

Relocating as a single expat can be tricky unless it’s everything's covered by the reassignment package, but bringing the family along as well is far more complicated.

Finding family-style accommodation in a safe area, arranging for childcare when necessary and finding a suitable school for the kids can cause chaos, and language difficulties often make the task worse still. International schools aren’t affordable by every emigrating family, and local schools can be a nightmare for even the brightest expat youngsters.

For a decade or so, the Netherlands has been a favourite expat hub for IT professionals as well as for expat entrepreneurs determined to make their start-ups succeed. Although Amsterdam is the favourite, other Dutch cities now have their fair share of expat communities. For families looking for the best education on offer, one Eindhoven primary school has scored first in the country by opening a nursery class dedicated to expatriate kids.

The new class at Eindhoven Primary School Reigerlaan has 20 pupils to date, hailing from diverse world countries including Italy, Egypt, India and Brazil as well as the UK and other European member states. All the parents work in high-tech Dutch companies in and around Eindhoven, and are more than happy with the new initiative. Preparations for the class began early last summer, with two English-speaking teachers hired and a special international curriculum put together. All classes are in English, and Dutch culture and the Dutch language are included.

Headmaster Geert Simons told reporters there’s clearly a demand for this type of class, as international expats only have a choice between a regular primary school and pricey international schools. Most expatriates aren’t sure how long they will stay in the Netherlands, making choosing the right school something of a gamble, but children who stay here until group 8 after arriving as toddlers can easily move on to either a regular Dutch secondary school or its international school equivalent.
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