The time has come for Brussels to be more ambitious. And proud. We are the capital of Europe, Belgium and Flanders but “plus est en nous”. All sorts of things are brewing and flourishing in the city, but there is too little space - both physically and mentally.
Why one.brussels? Because education has to break down barriers, not raise them. Today, the pupil body of the Dutch-speaking education massively exceeds the percentage of children that speak Dutch at home. But under-investment in the French-speaking part of education must not be at the expense of quality in the other part. The future of Brussels education should be one that adapts itself to the reality of our city. With a bespoke Brussels curriculum that aims for same attainment targets for all students. An education that takes linguistic diversity into account from kindergarten on. An education tailored to the needs and future of our Brussels kids also means an education that is increasingly bilingual.
Why one.brussels? Because we still do not make enough use of the obvious potential of Brussels. The EU, NATO, countless agencies and governments. National, international and regional. All heads of state and government pass through our city at least a few times a year. Brussels is the world capital of everything that is linked to public service. Why can't we become a hub or a lab for all public innovations that improve our lives and the lives of others: apps and services for shared mobility to reduce car pressure, a young tech company that offers solutions for the support for asylum seekers, a platform for informal caretakers. The ingredients are there for the taking. We only have to bring them more to the fore and facilitate the connections.
Why one.brussels? Because culture should be the number one priority. Culture in Brussels is by definition cosmopolitan and super diverse. We may all have different roots, but we share the same city and the same future. Culture creates a language with images, words, movement that is both personal and engaging. Art is the permanent barometer of society and must therefore be cross-cutting in Brussels. Transcending old communities and stimulating connections with new ones. Creating one out of many.