Gemeentelijke Basisschool Sint-Joost-aan-zee

School Type: Public, Preschool and Primary School

Age group: 2, 5-12

Number of students: 350

Year Elected: 2014


At Gemeentelijke Basisschool (GBS) Sint-Joost-aan-zee, the Wider School (Brede School) program’s purpose is to develop a sense of belonging among students, and to widen the frame of learning as well as the quality of education. It is the only dutch-speaking school of its academic area, located in a popular neighborhood and composed of 35 different nationalities. It managed to turn its cultural diversity into learning opportunities, and offer students a unique perspective on the world. The children develop a “multi-identity”, which integrates their background into their new ecosystem. Regardless of origin, native language, residence or socio-economic context, each student has the opportunity for optimal development and thus contribute to more social equality.

Changemaking Initiatives:

  • Lessons are given according to themes: Under the theme ‘Growing’, teachers will combine the goals for different disciplines such as Dutch and World Orientation instead of setting goals per discipline).

  • Students have the ability to create their own rules together with the teachers and the director.

  • Creative solutions: The ‘solution house’ where children can work out their disagreements.

  • Toekomst Atelier (‘Future Studio’) brings in external professionals outside school hours to expose children to various professions.

  • ING program: Bank workers volunteer time to work with kids on their reading and math skills.