Home education for children of compulsory schooling age
Education in Belgium is compulsory, but children do not need to go to school to comply with this obligation. Instead of sending your child to school, you can also opt for home education.
Important: all information below applies to The Flemish Community, for the Dutch-speaking education. For more information on home education supervised by the French-speaking Community or the German-speaking Community, please visit their websites.
Home education must aim to:
- develop the children’s personality, talents, as well as their mental and physical skills
- teach respect for human rights and fundamental freedom
- teach respect for the cultural values of the child and of others
- prepare the child for an active life as an adult
Children born in 2002 or later have to pass the periodic exams of the Examencommissie van de Vlaamse Gemeenschap (Examination Board of the Flemish Community).
- At the latest during the schoolyear in which your child turns 11 before 1 January, you must register your child at the Examencommissie Basisonderwijs (Examination Board Basic Education).
- At the latest during the schoolyear in which your child turns 13 before 1 January, your child must obtain a certificate of basic education.
- At the latest during the schoolyear in which your child turns 15 before 1 January, you must register your child at the Examencommissie secundair onderwijs (Examination Board Secondary Education).
- At the latest during the schoolyear in which your child turns 16 before 1 January, your child must obtain at least a certificate for the first cycle of secondary education.
If you register your child too late or if your child does not pass after two tentatives, you must enrol him/her into a school.
The inspectorate of education can control your home education to check whether the minimal requirements have been met. If your home education is considered unsatisfactory during two visits in a row, you must enrol your child into a school.
If you want to organise home education, you must submit a declaration of home education at the Agentschap voor Onderwijsdiensten (Agency for Educational Services, AGODI) the third school day of the schoolyear at the latest. You must submit this declaration each schoolyear as long as you want to organise home education.
Therefore, children cannot switch from school education to home education in the middle of the year.
There are several ways to organise home education:
- Individually: you can teach yourself or assign a private teacher
- Collectively: your child goes to a private school, or you can organise education together with other parents.
In order to obtain a degree or a certificate, your child still has to pass exams at the Examencommissie basisonderwijs (Examination Board Basic Education) or the Examencommissie secundair onderwijs (Examination Board Secondary Education).
You can find more information on how to organise home education on the website of Onderwijs Vlaanderen.
You bear all costs of home education yourself and you are not entitled to any education allowance.
Cel Leerplichtcontrole basisonderwijs
Koning Albert II-laan 15
02 553 04 04
02 553 93 85
Cel Leerplichtcontrole secundair onderwijs
Koning Albert II-laan 15
02 553 88 84
02 553 87 25