The Netherlands has no formal educational provision for children under the age of 4. Outside the formal education system there are, however, childcare facilities for younger children. The region offers plenty of choice, including agencies for in home childcare, day care centres, and SPIL centres (integrated primary education, play school, and childcare). Childcare is not free in The Netherlands.
A law deals with the quality, management, and finances of childcare in the Netherlands. It is based on the principle that childcare is a matter for parents, employers and authorities. You sign a contract with a childcare organization and pay the bill. Employers can reimburse a part of the costs (tax-free). You can also ask for reimbursement from the national authorities. In that case, your childcare centre must be accredited and registered in the place where you live. For more information about this and the childcare possibilities at your place of work, ask your HR manager or check the website kinderopvang (only available in Dutch).
In The Netherlands many parents who work during daytime, leave their children with a children daycare center.Eindhoven area has multiple daycare centers. These centers either have groups with children in all ages from 0 to 4 years (vertical groups) or groups per age (horizontal groups).
Most daycare centers are open from 07:30 or 08:00 till 18:00 or 18:30. With some you can leave your child a half day and some cities even have 24-hour childcare centers. Please make sure to register on time as most daycare centers have a (long) waiting list.
Au-Pair or Nanny
You can also choose to hire a nanny or au-pair. There are agencies where you can register for your own au-pair or nanny. This ensures you, when your babysitter gets ill or goes on holiday, you will have a substitute. Nannies who nurse several children in their own home, are allowed to have a maximum of four kids at a time. They might be more flexible than a daycare center, when for example you have to work late.
Pre School Care or After School Care
When you have children from the age of 4, they have to leave children daycare and go to primary school. From the age of 5, primary school is mandatory. Most schools start at 08:30 a.m. and go out around 15:00 p.m. which means you can't bring your child to early and you have to pick up your child after 15:00 p.m. For parents who have to start working before 08:30 a.m. or work after 15:00 p.m., there is a possibility to arrange for Pre School Care or After School Care (Buitenschoolse Opvang, BSO). Some schools have their BSO next door, others have transport for the children from and to selected BSO's. Most BSO's have the same opening hours as childcare centers.
A Dutch law deals with the quality, management, and finances of childcare in The Netherlands. It is based on the principle that childcare is a matter for parents, employers and authorities.
As parents you pay for childcare services. Some employers reimburse a part of the costs (tax-free). You might also qualify for benefit from the national authorities. In that case, your childcare center must be accredited and registered in the place where you live.
The level of childcare benefit depends on:
- The composition of the household
- Type of childcare
- Childcare expenses
- Yur income
For information about daycare, and the childcare possibilities at your work, ask your HR manager or go to www.eindhoven.nl (choose 'Engels', here you can also find information about the costs of childcare).More information on childcare benefits can be requested from the Tax Administration at www.belastingdienst.nl or by calling 0800-0543.
For more information about childcare in the region, check the website kinderopvang. (Only available in Dutch)
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