Fewer Walloon pupils learn Dutch as a second language, says French Community

In French-speaking education in Wallonia, an increasing number of pupils in secondary education choose English as a second language, while those opting for Dutch continue to decline, show figures by the Department of Education of the French Community.

Never before has the Dutch language been less popular among Walloon pupils in the first grade of secondary education. The percentage was already low last year, but the trend is continuing. Last school year, one in three pupils chose Dutch as a second language, 6.89% less than in the 2019-2020 school year.

Meanwhile, English is increasingly being chosen as a second language: last school year, two in three pupils in their first and second years of secondary school chose English, 10.09% more than in the 2019-2020 school year.

However, a growing number of pupils in French-language secondary education in Wallonia choose immersion education in Dutch, 12.83% more than in the 2018-2019 school year.

In case of immersion education, a number of subjects –mathematics, history and geography, for example– are taught in Dutch. In Flanders, immersion education is currently not legally possible; however, a pilot project is running in nine Flemish schools

In the French-speaking schools in the Brussels-Capital Region, pupils starting secondary education always get Dutch as a second language, as there is no possibility to choose English.





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