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Issue 15 - Spring 2016


Welcome to the Spring edition of our newsletter! After a short break we are back with updates on the N/P and Secondary Education Councils, details of new projects supported by the Community Fund and various updates on health and safety issues. Why not check out our regular column, "Love Laeken" and find out about what the Dreve Sainte Anne looked like before it became the busy street it is today!

On the services front, remember that the first enrolment phase for transport closes on 31 May 2016. Enrolments for extra-curricular activities will open on 1 June so keep checking the website for details of the activites. You should also have received details about the upcoming Performing Arts Day via email - for those of you who are wondering what Periscolaire involves, this is an excellent opportunity to come and see!

Finally, you should have received detils via email about this year's Somerfesto. The Somerfesto Committee has organised a wide range of exciting activities for kids of all ages to enjoy. Please volunteer to help make it the most successful school party ever! 

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anniversary euchinaL'Apeee de Bruxelles IV a été conviée à la fête "EU-Chinese Friendship" qui s'est déroulée le 5 juin dans la salle polyvalente de l'Ecole. Mme Conyers Barber, Présidente d'Interparents et Catherine Daguet, Présidente de l'APEEE de EEB4 ont été invitées. L'évenement s'est déroulé en présence de Mme Yang Yanyi, Ambassadeur de la République de Chine auprès de l'Union Européenne et de M. Kari Kivinen, Secrétaire Général des Ecoles européennes. La performance de la délégation des élèves chinois était particulièrement remarquable. Vous trouverez de plus amples informations dans le Year Book 2014/2015 qui vient d'être distribué aux élèves.

china friendship L'Apeee de EEB4 a remercié chaleureusement M. Schlabe pour cette initiative.

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Le Conseil d'Administration de l'APEEE de Bruxelles IV remercie le Comité Somerfesto 2015, les parents volontaires, la Direction de l'Ecole, les professeurs et le personnel de l'APEEE qui ont investi beaucoup de leur temps à la préparation et la réalisation de la Somerfesto 2015. Il faut remercier également les élèves de S4 qui ont apporté leur contribution active ainsi que les Somerfesto Angels (par ordre alphabétique) : Caroline, Diane, Iseult, Josie, Sarah and Steve !

Au nom de tous, nous félicitons les organisateurs de ce résultat à la hauteur de vos attentes.

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Over the past few weeks the Community Fund Commitee has been delighted to support a number of projects in the school community. To find out more check out our webpages, or see a summary below! We are also delighted to welcome a new Committee member - Diane Werhert was nominated by Decision of the CA on 7 July 2015.

It's the end of the first school year in which the community fund has been up and running. In the run up to Somerfesto, the Committee received a number of applications and is delighted to have been able to approve three projects in the school in June 2015.

Science Festival: On 19 June 2015, the CFC formally approved an application from Steve Panicelli for funding for the fantastic prizes on offer for participation at the Science Festival.  The Festival itself took place during the Somerfesto and was a huge success!

Murals: The CFC also approved an application for funding in the sum of 234 euros for boat varnish to enable P5s from all sections to finish some stunning murals they had been working on as part of European Hours. These are now on display in the Primary playground. Many thanks to Richard Nagel and Virginia Georgescu for submitting this project and working with our children to brighten up the school environment!

Flowers: The CFC received an application from Maria Pezzati for materials to complete a Recyleart project being undertaken by some of P4 in European Hours. The purpose of the project was to allow children to work around the concept of waste and to create art out of recyled materials. Check out the results below!


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enrolmentsThe demand for places in the European Brussels schools continues to increase, with 1615 new places sought across the four Brussels based schools. 369 of these places were offered at Laeken and currently 275 places offered have been accepted, 74 places were refused, and in 20 cases, parents have yet to reply.

Who will be joining us? Of the new places in Laeken, almost half (128) are in the French section, 52 in the English section, around 25 in each of the German, Italian and Dutch speaking sections, 14 in  the Romanian and 3 in the Bulgarian sections.  155 of the 278 are in Kindergarten, 88 in primary, and 32 in the secondary.

Will Laeken face overcrowding?  Not yet.  With the new enrolments, Laeken will continue to grow, reaching an estimated 2,545 places, but still within its capacity.  These numbers may still change over the summer, as there are further responses to places offered, additional notifications from parents that they will move and new enrolment requests come in.

What does the growth imply? There will be additional challenges for the transport and canteen services, whose staff are currently busy planning on how to address the increased demand and provide a good service. There will also be more demand for periscolaire, which makes it likely that the threshold for more activities will be reached, broadening the scope on offer further.  Note that the APEEE is engaged in the periscolaire and oversees the functioning of the transport and canteen services, so additional input from parents into the APEEE, and the range of associated working groups, will be most welcome. This can take place formally, with parents putting themselves forward for the APEEE board in the general assembly, or by engaging with working groups by contacting the relevant APEEE members.

How will it affect our children -- will it lead to more pressure on classes or less?  More often than not, there will be more children per class. However, given the class size thresholds, it will also mean that a few additional classes are likely to have be made – for example, an additional FR Kindergarten class is planned to be created for the new school year. Currently several language sections are at the ceiling of pupil numbers, and, pending final numbers, may lead to additional classes. For example, FR P1 is at 90 students and FRP2 at 89. Both may be split into four classes if the threshold of 30 per class is breached, the numbers of students in those classes will be lower easing class crowding. If the threshold is not breached, the classes will be very full, with the silver lining for P2 being that they could then keep their current teachers. The decision will be taken over the summer.

The growth of pupil numbers in secondary should also make it slightly more likely that options are of offer, as again minimum pupil number thresholds are needed for the options to be offered.

What does the future look like? The pupil population in Laeken is expected to continue to increase in 2016/2017 and beyond, first due to the S7 pupils in 2016/17 and the growing maturity of the Bulgarian and Romanian language sections, which currently only go to year P4 and P3 respectively, and the Dutch language section only to S5. This will lead the school being at full capacity in the near future. With the other European schools already facing overcrowding, (3398 in EEB I, 3045 in EEB II, and 2984 in EEB III), future demands rises expected across the European schools in Brussels, will need a fifth Brussels school. The discussions are still underway as to where this school will be, when it will be opened, and what language sections it takes. It will be important that those decisions build on reflections from Laeken language sections and any new school could build on our own lessons for developing services in a new and fast growing school. That will be the feature of a next APEEE newsletter article.

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