Children from the asylum shelter on Eindhoven’s Kanaaldijk received their first lesson on Tuesday. This happened at Basisschool ‘t Karregat in Tongelre district.
The 22 refugees between 4 and 10 years old are divided into different classes and are taught in Dutch. Aap, noot mies, (monkey, nut, Mies) but just a little differently. “They don’t understand Dutch yet and so they learn a few words every day”, teacher Sylvia Huijsmans says.
In small steps and so it is repeat and repeat again. “Today I have already mentioned the word pencil forty times. I then show a real pencil and then they get to write their own name after that. And no, that’s not in block letters”.
The initiative came from director Teuntje Versluis. She heard that the children in the shelter on Kanaaldijk do not receive any education. “I find that distressing, then with my educational heart I have to do something about it. Together with my colleagues we made sure, within a week, that the refugees can be taught here”.
The asylum children will not only be taught on Tuesday. Versluis wants to help the children for a longer period of time. “At least as long as the children are in the shelter on Kanaaldijk-Zuid. That way they will at least have had an education if they have to take the children somewhere else”.
Since this spring, about a hundred refugees from Ter Apel have been given shelter on Kanaaldijk. Initially there were critical voices in the neighbourhood about the arrival of the shelter. Later the fear of nuisance subsided.
Translated by: Bob