Language disadvantage and pre-school children aged 2,5 to 4

Over 15% of children in the Netherlands are at risk of developing language disadvantage. The government wants to tackle language disadvantage among young children.

Early childhood education

Municipal authorities provide early childhood education through special programmes at childcare centres. These programmes are designed to teach pre-school children Dutch through play activities. Municipalities can choose the programme they prefer. They are responsible for identifying children at risk of incurring language disadvantage, using a system that weighs factors such as the parents’ level of education.

Quality of early childhood education

To safeguard the quality of early childhood education, there must be at least two qualified professionals to every group of children. The maximum group size is 16. The Municipal Health Services (GGD) and the Dutch Inspectorate of Education are responsible for monitoring the quality of early childhood education.