Response from Minister Bussemaker on our letter concerning student mothers

On September 18, 2015, the PILP, together with Stichting Steunpunt Studerende Moeders, FNV Vrouw, Clara Wichmann Proefprocessenfonds and the Nederlandse Vrouwenraad, asked the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science to respond to the letter of the Vereniging voor Vrouw en Recht (herein referred to as the VVR).

The letter of the VVR criticised the lack of regulations facilitating pregnant and mothering students’ access to education, denoting their omission as discriminatory. They further highlighted the fact students had no right to maternity leave and that an alarming 50% of young mothers dropped out of school in the Intermediate Vocational Education, and 75% in the Universities of Applied Sciences.

Minister Bussemaker sent a letter back on January 18, 2016. We are pleased to see that she has taken our request seriously. The Minister explained that the responsibility to seek flexible solutions within the education agreement and the state-aid regulation lies with the respective educational institutions and municipalities. She states that any amendments to the current regulations would be unnecessary, although she professes an interest in the results of our research pertaining to the role played by educational institutions in facilitating the studies of pregnant and mothering students.

The PILP will be discussing the possibility of future work with the above-mentioned pressure groups.

You can read the Dutch letter in Dutch from the minister of Education, Culture and Science here.