As schools in Holland become segregated along racial lines, is multiculturalism being replaced by classroom apartheid?
In a multicultural city like Amsterdam it's not surprising to find schools with a high percentage of foreign children. But what is unique is the almost complete segregation of the school system along racial lines. "Most of the schools in a city like Amsterdam tend to be either predominantly black or predominantly white," comments Dutch socialist Ruud Koepens. "It is very reminiscent of apartheid." Within five years, over half the residents of Holland's four largest cities will be of foreign origin. Many native Dutch fear their culture is being swamped and are calling for tighter immigration controls. "Multiculturalism has failed completely," states Eric Baleman, education spokesman for the Dutch Liberal Party. But migrants like Amal Fakhor feel it is their culture which is under attack. "We hear all the time we should learn Dutch really well, get to know Dutch culture, but they forget that they should understand our culture," she complains. Many migrant parents are now pushing for official recognition of their culture and calling for the compulsory teaching of Turkish in Dutch schools. Unless something is done to tackle the problem soon, Holland's famed multiculturalism may become a thing of the past.FULL SYNOPSIS