On which public holidays are schools closed in the Netherlands?

In the Netherlands, all schools are closed on public holidays, such as Christmas and Easter. Schools can choose whether to be open or closed on certain religious or other special days that are not public holidays.

Public holidays

Schools in the Netherlands are closed on the following public holidays:

  • Christmas Day and Boxing Day;
  • New Year's Day;
  • Easter Monday;
  • Ascension Day;
  • Whit Monday;
  • King’s Day;
  • Liberation Day.

Always check with your child’s school to find out when it is closed.

Religious holidays

Schools are allowed to give their pupils the day off for religious days that are not public holidays, such as Good Friday, days of prayer and thanksgiving, and Eid al-Fitr. Always check with your child’s school to find out when it is closed.

Special leave for religious reasons

If the school is open on a religious day that your family normally observes, you can apply for your child to take special leave for religious reasons. You must apply for this at least two days before the religious day.


The festival of Carnival starts on a Friday evening and ends on the following Tuesday evening. Your child is not allowed to take time off school for Carnival because there are plenty of opportunities to celebrate it during the weekend. However, many schools in the south of the Netherlands (where Carnival is widely celebrated) schedule their Spring holiday at the same time as Carnival.