Preschool Education in Belgium

Free pre-primary schooling (Dutch: kleuteronderwijs; French: enseignement maternel; German: Kindergarten) is provided to every child from the age of 2 years 6 months. In most schools the child can start in school as soon as they reach this age, so class size for the youngest children grows during the year. In the Flemish region, start dates are limited to 6 per year, after a school holiday period and the first school day in February.

The aim of pre-school is to develop, in a playful way, children's cognitive skills, their capacity to express themselves and communicate, their creativity and independence. There are no formal lessons or assessments, and everything is taught through a framework of play.

Although it is not compulsory, more than 90% of all children in the age category attend pre-school.

Most pre-schools are attached to a particular primary school. Preschools and primary schools often share buildings and other facilities. Some schools offer special pre-primary education for children with disabilities or other special needs.