In the Netherlands education is compulsory for all children who live here, regardless of their nationality. If the child is registered at an educational institute abroad, it still has to attend school in the Netherlands. Compulsory education starts on the first day of the next month after the fifth birthday. Most children start their school at the age of four and it is even possible to attend school at the age of three years and ten months. This is especially helpful for foreign children when they are starting to learn the Dutch language.
Compulsory education lasts until the school year in which the student turns sixteen. For the next period of two years partial compulsory education goes into effect, where the student must attend some form of education for at least two days a week.
Taking the children on a holiday outside the regular school holidays is only possible when the parents can prove that they cannot travel at other times due to work situations. This exception is allowed only once per school year for a period of ten days and must be approved by the school principal.