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EACEA National Policies Platform:Eurydice
Organisation and governance

Belgium - German-Speaking Community

2.Organisation and governance

Last update: 27 November 2023

In order to understand the situation in the German-speaking Community, three aspects are important, among others, which do not play a role for the other two communities in Belgium: The local language and, since 1963, the official and teaching language is German. However, since Belgium has in the past and still today been administered mainly in Dutch and French, these two other national languages - above all the language of its immediate neighbour, French - play a special role in the education system of the German-speaking Community. From 1815 (by the Congress of Vienna) to 1919 (Treaty of Versailles after the First World War), the territory of the German-speaking Community belonged to Prussia or the German Reich, from 1919 to 1940 to Belgium, was annexed to the Third Reich by annexation in the Second World War, and has been Belgian again since 1944/45. The German-speaking Community can represent an independent policy in many areas - including education - but is not independent in other areas related to the administration and management of the territory, but part of the Walloon Region. These three aspects cannot, by their very nature, be highlighted and dealt with every time in the following chapters