If Michael Oooms is driving with his children in the holidays, he must again and again the same question to answer: “Why are not the children in the school? Are you sick?” The 48-year-old graphic designer rolls his eyes and sighs.

That was in may, when they were on the road in Italy. Or when you went in January with a rental car through the United Arab Emirates and photos of it on Facebook posted. Ooms is a big man who loves to laugh. He then explains in a friendly, why his daughter Moya and his son, Nando, legally.

your primary school – a low-rise building made of clinker with yellow awnings is located in a residential neighbourhood in the Dutch city of Apeldoorn and is part of an experiment: Since August 2010, parents can decide for themselves when to take their children out of the classroom. You must enter this twice a year, the holiday periods of their children in a form that you submit in the school office.

There Ineke Salentijn, Deputy Director of the stars of school Apeldoorn sits on, and transmits the requests in the Computer. 167 children, each has twelve weeks, ten of which you can distribute freely over the year, for a week, and so do not need to beat Salentijn in the service plan with each of the days. Only over the Christmas and new year holidays the school is closed for two weeks for all of them.


Salentijn is no longer working for 40 years as a teacher and says: “The old System is the time.” Six Weeks Summer Holiday? It is also available in the Netherlands and if both parents are working, perhaps even in the tourism industry or as seasonal workers, is the bridge this time. Add to that overcrowded Hotels, overpriced flights and at least in Germany, even police officers who pick up at airports, families that both want to escape.

The school in Apeldoorn shows that it is different. You need about a fifth more staff, because outside the regular holiday times, children are never really enough in the holiday to the teachers to save.

Because not all parents can benefit from flexible holiday scheme, the holidays and sometimes only a dozen or so children in the school. An employee of the teacher and a fee force paid the school out of your Budget, take care of the Four – to twelve-year olds.

Michael Ooms’ daughter Moya likes this weeks. “I learn from the Great and the Small,” says the nine-year-old. Only sometimes, Moya is sad that she has available in July as most of your friends. Then your mother reminds you that you stand in January to the highest skyscraper in the world in Dubai, as their friends were in the school.

family Ooms in Dubai

across the Country, only eight schools currently part of the pilot project. At the beginning of the pilot phase, eleven. How well the concept works, also depends on how the teachers organize their lessons. Finally, it is constantly, some students need to catch up on missed material. With a classic frontal teaching that would lift.

computer-based internal differentiation

Each pilot school will make your lessons different. The stars of school in Apeldoorn, relies on what is true for us in many places as an Ideal to aspire to: the computer-based internal differentiation. In a first class of twelve children sitting around three tables, it’s Friday morning, each child has a yellow headphones on the ears, and a blue Tablet in front of you on the table.

It is quiet, up on a Tablet suddenly a educational film losdudelt. A Boy had to plug in his headphones. Or he has taken it out intentionally? The Boy grins. Teacher Annemieke van der Linde rushes to his table and put the plug back in the socket.

Van der Linde goes from table to table, while the children solve the tasks on their computers. Depending on how fast you are, the Software, the Level. The program also evaluates the progress of each student, so that teachers can see what each child has to catch up.

How focused the first graders in the classroom with their Tablets to work, see you in the Video:

if you miss a test, it must – or post-grinding. In the afternoon there is project work, all six weeks is a different theme to it. Currently: Friendship. The six-year-olds have painted pictures of friends and the hallway in front of her class decorated. The Eleven-year-old write stories about friendship that you want to read out the six-year-old.

Van der Linde spends a lot of time, your teaching, prepare, and colleagues to vote, even on the weekend. If you are going during the school year, vacation or sick leave, should someone else take over. “You have to be flexible,” says the 60-Year-old. “Education does not work today as 30 years ago.”

The teacher loses each year some of our colleagues and to win new ones. She says that some people find the concept very tiring. But the work is fun. “I want to show the world that this school works,” she says. “We are finally in the year 2018!”

scepticism in Germany

the stars of school Can be a model for German schools? Heinz-Peter Meidinger, the German teachers ‘ Association reacts negative. For Germany it was “not a workable model,” he said to the MIRROR. It is hardly a school that have opened the whole year over find. In addition, teachers were then reduced with examination dates, the you could start.

The Association of German intermediate school teachers judged even harsher. “Through this model, a continuous transfer of knowledge and lesson planning is no longer possible,” said its Chairman, Jürgen Böhm. Also, the social interaction between the students would be severely disrupted.

From the WT it is, the necessary reforms to flexible holiday times is necessary, would not be a priority. “It is urgent, reforms such as the inclusion of the, whole day, or the Learning with new media quality to fully implement,” said education expert Ilka Hoffmann.

The Confederation of German employers ‘ associations, waving also. The chamber of Commerce and industry of North Rhine-Westphalia announces that the concept could improve the compatibility of family and career and help companies with Seasonal businesses. It should be definitely a high quality school education is ensured.

five years

In this last point, moved to the it concerns are also in the Dutch Ministry of education, apparently. The most recent public evaluation of the School pilot project is already four years. It says: “The Transition to flexible hours from a school and those who work there, a lot.” It is the risk that other sites would be in education. Two of the pilot schools have poor performance. The extent to which the correlations with the flexible holiday periods, is hard to say. However, such a Reform would need to be prepared in each and every case thoroughly.

Ineke Salentijn has developed the concept in Apeldoorn. Your school have no problems with lack of student services, she says. It may be that you need what you built in the past few years, settle yet again.

The Ministry of education wanted to decide by 2014, if the school experiment is to be terminated or extended. Then, the authority extended the project phase to a year, then a further four years. In these days, finally, the final decision should fall.

But a spokeswoman for the Ministry informs that It values the results. Only in a few months, it’ll give clarity. At least as long as Moya and Nando Ooms can still go on vacation, when your friends are sitting in the classroom. In February it will go for a week to Cornwall in October to Iceland. So, not much going on there.

Sam Yoon has many years of experiences in journalism. He has covered such areas as information technology, science, sports and politics. Yoon can be reached at 82-2-6956-6698.