Education: give all talents the chance they deserve 

Education is still of undiminished importance to D66. Both for young Amsterdammers and adults that want to keep developing: everyone should have a chance to be seen for who they are and for their talents. And everyone should have a chance to fully develop those talents. Regarding the school drawing system our ambition is to make sure every Amsterdammer can attend a school that’s in their top 5. Next to the attention for students we also want extra attention to go to teachers. Schools at which learning performance lags behind should be made more attractive to teachers by giving them higher salaries and trainings. 

Rich school day 

D66 wants school where you don’t only learn to become something, but also to become someone. This means a rich school day for every child, with education, pre- and after-school care, sports, culture, citizenship and healthy school lunches. This way children get a chance to fully develop their talents. Next to that, we also want to give more room to children to  develop themselves in the first few years of high school (brugklas). So that children get the opportunity to erase any learning deficits they might have after grade 8, especially when it comes to language. We also advocate a safe learning environment. We fight against discrimination in education and for a broader representation when it comes to both teachers and teaching materials. We want to expand the sociopsychological help to youth and students in Amsterdam. 

Talent development

Where you were born decides your chances in life. D66 want to fight this. That’s why we have to invest unequally in equal chances, which means we invest more in schools with big learning deficits in the Southeast, New West and North. We want to continue preschool for broad target groups and ensure clear, proactive dissemination of information in the entire city to increase the number of participants. Amsterdam is a front-runner when it comes to the mbo-agenda, and we are proud of that. We want to intensify the cooperation between mbo-schools and companies, including SMEs, for internships, excursions and buddy-systems so that everyone gets the chance to expand their network and with that, their world. We want to sign internship agreements with major employers in the city. We promote and value mbo- education as being the practical education and we let go of the terms ‘higher’ and ‘lower’ education.  

Teachers agenda

We need the best teachers in the most challenging places. It becomes more attractive for teachers to work at schools with learning deficits, when they offer higher salaries and training opportunities. We also want to expand the priority policy for teachers in the housing market, as well as other benefits such as travel allowance and parking spaces. In addition to that, we want to expand programmes for new teachers, with a ‘teacher traineeship’ for example. This way teachers can develop themselves continuously. A career as a teacher in Amsterdam becomes attractive when teachers have the opportunity to do specialisations and exchanges with other schools within the city. Next to well-ventilated school buildings we also ensure healthy, sustainable and green buildings with good climate control. 

Beeld: Tamarcus Brown via Unsplash