Flemish schools warned against ordering fill-in-the-blank textbooks

Schools should move away from fill-in-the-blank books "that stifle teachers' creativity and do little to challenge students", says the Kwaliteitsalliantie, an organisation of users and suppliers of learning materials.

The Kwaliteitsalliantie was founded in 2022 in response to the Flemish education sector's call for better textbooks. Education expert Luc De Man brought together all the relevant parties, from educational publishers to educational providers, to reach consensus on a list of quality criteria for textbooks.

As a result, the alliance is now urging schools to "think very carefully about the textbooks they order for the next school year". In March, educational publishers typically release new or revised editions of their textbooks.

'Disastrous' for education

The alliance calls these textbooks "disastrous for the quality of education". Some books require students to fill in only a few words, while others provide unnecessarily large spaces for students to write answers.

"These types of learning tools are often of little use, but they are also unnecessarily expensive," the organisation said. "After all, parents cannot resell fill-in books second hand, which is possible with traditional textbooks."

"We are noticing that there is more and more agreement about the direction we should take with our teaching materials," said De Man. "If didactic fill-in methods have to be used at all, it has to be done very carefully and soberly."


#FlandersNewsService | PHOTO © BELGA

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