Reception class for children with a different mother tongue (OKAN)

Reception class education for newcomers with a different mother tongue is set up for young people of non-Belgian or non-Dutch nationality who have recently arrived in the country and lack an adequate command of Dutch. The reception class enables these pupils to learn Dutch as quickly as possible. 

OKAN in Brussels

Newcomers with a different mother tongue can join reception classes in both elementary and secondary education.  

  • In elementary education, each school can request additional hours in order to offer OKAN as soon as a certain number of newcomers with a different mother tongue are registered at the school. The school itself determines how it organises the OKAN lessons (in a separate class, additional support in the ordinary class or a mixed solution).
  • In secondary education, certain schools are designated as ‘OKAN schools’.  Newcomers with a different mother tongue who opt for a school like this receive a full-time Dutch language immersion course there. After this, they move to regular education. After the reception year, a follow-up coach will provide further support, guidance and follow-up for the pupils. The follow-up coach can also assist the teachers at the follow-up school. The OKAN schools:
  • Reception classes for newcomers with a different mother tongue are also provided in part-time secondary education (Learning and Working). The aim here is improve the transition to the labour market. This educational provision is directed at language skills, integration and self-reliance.

Also of interest

Onderwijs Vlaanderen (Education Flanders)

Onderwijs Vlaanderen (Education Flanders)

More information about OKAN is available on the Onderwijs Vlaanderen website.