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European schools Brussels

(9 Posts)
Roulitsa Thu 22-Jun-17 09:46:19

Hello everyone,

I am new to mumsnet but have been reading a lot of the threads about moving to Brussels and schooling and I was hoping for some advice.

We will be moving to Brussels on a posting in the near future and I am planning for my two girls to start school in September 2018. The 4 schools in Brussels seem huge and I wonder if they would suit my kids as they have attended small primary schools. Does anyone have any specific information or advice regatding the school in Mol? I see it is much smaller although the difficulty would be travel. Is it a crazy idea to perhaps live in Antwerp, husband commute to Brussels and kids to school? Of course we will visit the schools to see for ourselves although I believe the place that would be offered to us would be the one in Laeken due to oversubscription in the others.

Any advice regarding these schools would be most welcome. Thanks.

LilCamper Thu 22-Jun-17 09:49:08

The British School Brussels takes children from Primary age. My year 6 has always been is small primary schools (think 1 class per year) and she will be starting at BSB next year. The school has lots of support in place.

Roulitsa Thu 22-Jun-17 09:57:28

Thanks for your response.

Their places are guaranteed at a European school so I think that will be our route as private schools might be beyond our budget.

paap1975 Thu 22-Jun-17 10:02:25

The European Schools are big and impersonal. Some kids thrive there, others don't. They may well be better off in local schools. Kids learn languages really fast, so I wouldn't let that put you off. I guess it all depends on how long you are planning on staying. How old are your kids?

Roulitsa Thu 22-Jun-17 10:21:04

Thanks for replying.

They will be 10 and 12 when we move. They are bilingual in English and Greek so they would be able to follow Greek at a European school. The posting is for 5-6 years. I am not against local schools however we have changed countries/schools once already and the youngest had a very hard time adapting so I would be reluctant to place her in a different system with an unknown language. This is why I am interested in the school in Mol as it is a lot smaller and perhaps less impersonal.

paap1975 Thu 22-Jun-17 10:46:59

OK, so they would be in the Greek section with English as second language. Given the languages they have, they would probably be best off in a European School.
But in that case, I would try to find out which school they will be at (not all schools have all language sections) and find somewhere to live accordingly. Brussels/Belgium is very heavily congested in terms of traffic and I would strongly advise against any kind of commute by car. Commuting between Antwerp and Brussels is not fun.

Roulitsa Thu 22-Jun-17 11:40:40

Thanks for your reply again.

Their English is much stronger than their Greek as their entire schooling so far has been in English with Greek as an add-on. So I would be looking at the English section and I understand that they could study Greek at Secondary. Not only that, the English system is very different to the Greek one from a pedagogical viewpoint so I think we would try to follow the English curriculum.

paap1975 Thu 22-Jun-17 13:00:18

OK, so EN section it will be then. I probably wouldn't bother with the Greek one they get to secondary school as it will be very basic (and only if there are enough pupils for a class). You might want to see about doing that separately. There are loads of non native speakers in the English section, since that is where most students without a section in their own language end up. From what I hear, Laeken is the nicest of the Brussels schools. Let me know if you have any other questions.

Roulitsa Thu 22-Jun-17 17:07:10

Thanks again for your input. I have loads of questions but this may have to do for now!

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