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What’s on this week: Virtual edition

If there’s anything you’re not short of this week, it’s movies. Belgian film distributors, streaming services and festivals have stepped up to the corona quarantine challenge – putting new movies online, cutting fees and offering freebies. Local streaming platforms, for instance, are offering new...

Making the grade: BEPS International School ahead of corona curve

While the closure of schools due to the outbreak of the coronavirus in Belgium came very suddenly, with only one day between being open and closed, some schools were more ready than others. BEPS International School in Brussels had already implemented online learning programmes and was well prepared for the imminent school closures.

Campaign launched to get laptops to lower-income pupils

Flemish education minister Ben Weyts and Brussels minister for Dutch-language education Sven Gatz are co-operating with Digital for Youth to provide previously loved laptops to secondary school students who do not have one at home. The initiative has been launched in response to schools being...

Abolish sick notes during coronavirus crisis, ask doctors

Family doctors have had it with writing out sick notes to excuse patients from work who have flu-like symptoms. At this point, the normal flu season is over, so flu symptoms are being attributed to the coronavirus, particularly if a dry cough and fever are involved. “The system of sick notes is...
Wildflower Garden Arne Quinze Maruani Mercier gallery

Belgian artist Arne Quinze paints a positive message for local hospital

Belgian contemporary artist Arne Quinze has donated a large-scale painting to his local hospital in Ghent as a thank you to health workers during the coronavirus crisis. “I want to reach out to all the healthcare workers risking their lives for our sanity during these bizarre times. I'd like to...

Older generations are better at following coronavirus measures, survey shows

A large majority of people who can work from home are doing so under the coronavirus shutdown, and those aged 65 and older are following the regulations much more stringently than the other generations. Those are two findings of a survey carried out by Antwerp University. Some 560,000 people living...

Grocery problem solved as brewers announce home deliveries

Good old Belgium. Twelve days of we’re-not-supposed-to-call-it-a-lockdown, and brewers have come to the realise that, while we have plenty of toilet paper, we are fast running out of beer. So Brussels brewers have started home deliveries. Not only does this lessen your time at the supermarket, but...

Pre-schools must test Dutch skills from 2021

Dutch language testing in nursery schools will be introduced in the 2021-22 school year, under legislation adopted by the government of Flanders. The aim, says education minister Ben Weyts, is to catch children whose Dutch skills are not up to the mark before they go on to primary school. Beginning...
Coronavirus-Belgium-Mental health support

Surviving stay-at-home: Looking after your mental health during the coronavirus crisis

The coronavirus pandemic is an unprecedented crisis affecting everyone around the world. Belgium followed other European countries in introducing a raft of measures aimed at curbing its spread, including strict rules about staying at home, as well as social distancing. We have all experienced...

Lack of food for homeless due to hoarding and closures

Brussels-City has turned drinking water fountains on a little early in response to calls from organisations that work with the homeless. The municipality turns the fountains off for the winter, normally reconnecting them in April. The homeless have had a difficult time getting to food and water...

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