More pupils in expertise centres

26/05/2003 10:00

In school year 2002/’03 nearly 52 thousand children are attending expertise centres, centres that provide education for children with special needs. In school year 1991/’92 this number was sill only 30 thousand. Most noticeable is the increase in the number of children with severe behavioural difficulties and severe learning difficulties in secondary education at these expertise centres.

Steady growth in enrolment at expertise centres

Expertise centres provide education for children with severe behavioural or learning difficulties and for children with a physical or mental disability. The number of pupils at these centres has continued its steady increase in 2002/’03. Nearly 52 thousand pupils now attend these centres, 3.5 thousand more than in 2001/’02. Since 1991/’92 the number of pupils has risen by an average 5 percent per year.

Pupils attending expertise centres

Many children with behavioural or learning difficulties in secondary education at expertise centres

Two out of three pupils attending expertise centres are in primary education; the remaining one-third are in secondary education. Three-quarters of the latter group are in education for children with severe behavioural or learning difficulties. For the children in primary education this is just over 40 percent. Primary school children in these centres include many children who suffer from a chronic illness, children with multiple disabilities and children with severe speech impediments.

Pupils in expertise centres by type of education

Twice as many children with severe behavioural and learning difficulties in secondary education

The most striking development is the increase in the number of children with severe behavioural and severe learning difficulties in secondary education at the expertise centres. This number has doubled since 1991/’92. The number of children in education for the deaf has nearly halved in the same period.

Pupils in expertise centres by type of education

Increase in cultural minorities

The total number of pupils in the expertise centres has risen by 70 percent in the last eleven years. In the same period the number of pupils in these centres belonging to one of the cultural minorities  has risen by 110 percent. Seven out every ten children attending these centres are boys.

Frank Blom and Rob Kapel