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Initial identification of special educational needs - Netherlands

Assessment of pupils with sensory, mental and/or physical impairments and/or behaviour problems

The education of special educational needs children in the Netherlands has long been the sole responsibility of special schools. Dutch education legislation has supported the development and maintenance of a segregated system for many years. Additional special needs funding was only available for those pupils labelled as eligible for special education and then placed in a segregated setting. Regular schools were not at all restricted in referring pupils (Pijl & Meijer, 1999). In 2003 new Laws introduced new assessment criteria and systems for pupils with sensory, mental and/or physical impairments and/or behaviour problems (see for a more extensive description: development of integration/inclusion at the national Dutch pages: www.european-agency.org). The new Dutch policymaking is based on the idea that parents should be able to choose freely between regular and special schools for their children.
 
Sources:

  • Pijl, S.J. & Meijer, C.J.W. (1999). Supporting integration by redirecting cash-flows. In: H. Daniels & Ph. Garner (Eds.) Inclusive education (p 82-91). London: Kogan Page.
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