Thursday, May 31, 2007

Netherlands: Immigrant children of Turkish and Moroccan background struggle with Dutch

Expatica News:

Almost one in five students in groups 1 and 2 at primary school has great difficulty with the Dutch language. They understand little or no Dutch and speak in two-word sentences.

Many of the children in question have not attended any pre-school programme and most are of Turkish or Moroccan background. Researchers from the national educational advisory centre KPC Group concluded this on Wednesday, the Volkskrant reports.

The researchers surveyed more than 2,800 children. Teachers, school directors and educational coordinators at 43 primary schools filled in a questionnaire.

The researchers attribute the language difficulties to "poor participation in pre-school education" and the insufficient practice in Dutch at home.

The toddlers' mothers in particular have poor mastery of Dutch. The children are spoken to little at home and when they are addressed it is often in the language of the family's country of origin.

More evidence that many immigrant groups are unwilling to assimilate.

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