“Education should be the number 1 priority”

By Bart Jacobs

Wednesday the 6th of November marked a nationwide teacher strike in the Netherlands. In cities all over the country teachers protested against budget cuts and showed the government that they should make education the number 1 priority. Teachers and children showed this by wearing t-shirts and holding up signs that said ‘I am not the number 1 priority’. This was inspired by Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte who said that education is the top priority for this government.

In the morning there was a protest at the Dam square in Amsterdam, which was attended by 10.000 teachers. Throughout the country many other teachers protested as well, about 80% of the schools took part and over 4.000 schools were closed. So far, the Minister for Education Arie Slob has made a one-off commitment of 460 million, but there will be no structural investment as the teachers want. Listen to this reportage to hear what teachers want to change and how parents think of education in the Netherlands.