Special education

Special education ('buitengewoon onderwijs') caters for pupils suffering from a disability or from learning or behavioural disorders. There are different types of special education. To cater for pupils’ capabilities and individual problems, special education is divided into education types and education forms.
teacher and pupil (photo © VGC - Lander Loeckx)


Special elementary education

Special nursery education ('buitengewoon kleuteronderwijs') is subdivided into 7 different types:

  • Type 2: for children suffering from a mild to severe mental disability
  • Type 3: for children suffering from serious emotional and/or behavioural disorders
  • Type 4: for children suffering from a physical disability
  • Type 5: for children confined to hospital, a preventorium or staying in a residential setting
  • Type 6: for children who are visually impaired
  • Type 7: for children who are aurally impaired
  • Type 9: for children with autistic spectrum disorders

Special primary education offers three extra types:

  • Type 'basisaanbod' ('BA') (basic offer): for children with special educational needs for whom the regular program with reasonable adaptations isn't achievable in general education. (This type replaces the former type 1 and type 8.)

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Special secondary education

Special secondary education ('buitengewoon secundair onderwijs') is subdivided in the same types as special primary education and also offers 4 different education forms. These education forms cater for pupils suffering from the various types of disabilities/disorders. Every form of education comes with its own objective:

  • Education form 1: social integration
  • Education form 2: social integration and vocational training
  • Education form 3: integration into a standard living and work environment via vocational education
  • Education form 4: preparation for higher education via general, vocational, artistic and technical education

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