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Government sets aside cash for new European school

The Federal Government is reported to have set aside between 50 and 70 million euro for the construction of a new European school. The decision to build an additional European school in Brussels was first taken in 2015. Now according to an article in Saturday’s edition of the daily ‘De Morgen’, the Federal Government has set aside funding for the construction of what will be the 6th European school in Belgium.

Currently, there are 4 European schools in Brussels (Ukkel, Laken, Sint-Lambrechts-Woluwe and Elsene) and 1 in Mol (Antwerp province). ‘De Morgen’ reports that that the new school will have room for 2,500 pupils and will be built on the former NATO site in the Brussels district of Haren.    

The construction of the new school falls under the remit of the Interior Minister Jan Jambon (Flemish nationalist) who is also responsible for the Buildings’ Agency that will oversee the work. The funding will come from the strategic investment budget.

There are currently 14 European schools, 5 of which in Belgium, in 6 EU countries.

The schools are in the first instance for the children of parents that work for the European institutions. They are allowed to attend the schools free of charge and are given priority when enrolling.

In theory “local” children are also welcome, as are the children of expats that don’t work for the European institutions, providing that they are prepared to pay several thousand euro in school fees. However, in Brussels this is rarely the case in practice due to lack of places available at the city’s 4 European schools    

Mr Jambon’s office told the paper that it is hoped that the new school will be ready by September 2019.