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Last week I had parent teacher meetings for both children. These were fifteen minute sessions with their teachers and without the children there. And we have these three times a year now – late autumn, early spring and before the summer holiday.

Both of them are doing OK, though I was told of some areas they both need to work on for the rest of the year. Given that we’ve not yet been here five years and speak English at home I think they’re both doing amazing.

All children at Dutch schools do regular tests, the most common are from a company called cito. At pre school and through the kleuter classes (til approximately age six) these tests are infrequent. But once children start group three they are tested twice a year on their maths, speed of reading, comprehension, and spelling. So for rocket boy I got a series of little graphs showing how he’s developed in those skills. And for both of them I got a written report going into more detail of how they’re doing in all the different things they do at school.

As a non-Dutch speaker these meetings are a bit anxious for me as it’s one of the few serious conversations I have in Dutch. But they do help me understand how the system works and what is expected at school. The teachers are good at helping me learn how it works. At least most of them speak English, so if it’s needed then they can translate for me. But this time I didn’t need them to, so I must still be making progress with my Dutch!

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