Teaching profession act

The teaching profession has been legally protected since 1 August 2017 by the Teacher Profession Act. The law ensures that the quality of the profession and the professional practice by the teacher is guaranteed. The law applies to primary education, secondary education, special education and secondary vocational education.

The law gives teachers more freedom and control in the exercise of their profession. The following is regulated by law:

The description of the profession of teacher
What is meant by the teaching profession and what are they responsible for?

  • the content of the education (subject matter process)
  • the way students learn that content (subject didactic process)
  • the learning climate within the school (pedagogical process).

In addition, teachers are independently responsible for assessing the educational performance of students. Teachers also meet the competence requirements drawn up and maintained by the profession itself.

The teacher's professional space
The law not only stipulates that the teacher is responsible for the above three points, but also that the teacher must be given sufficient say within the school. This 'professional space' must fit within the educational policy of the school. That is why the school and the teacher must make agreements, for example about teachers' participation in the content of the teaching material, the resources they use during the lesson such as books, how the teaching material is offered, the guidance of students or the pedagogical-didactic approach. . They record these agreements in a professional statute.

This statute takes into account the professional standard of the profession. This professional standard contains norms about the profession of teacher, for example about dealing with pupils and parents. The professional group formulates these standards itself and also keeps them up to date.

Frequently asked Questions


  • What is a professional status?

    From 1 August 2018, every competent authority in primary education, secondary education, special education and MBO has the obligation to draw up a professional statute in consultation with the teachers. In the professional statute, agreements are made about respecting the teacher's professional space.

  • Which professional space is it then?

    It is about ensuring that the teacher has sufficient professional space in relation to the content of the curriculum, the resources used and how the curriculum is presented. The teacher must also have sufficient professional space with regard to the pedagogical-didactic approach to be used at the school and how this is implemented. This also includes the supervision of the pupils and contacts with the parents. There must also be sufficient professional leeway with regard to maintaining the competence of the teachers as part of the team.

  • Who checks whether a professional status is available and from when?

    The Education Inspectorate can check for the presence of a professional status from 1 August 2018.

  • What is the term of a professional status?

    There is no prescribed term. It is important to make agreements about the evaluation of the functioning of the professional status and the moments of review and to record those agreements.

  • Should the participation draw up the professional statute?

    No, the law states that the competent authority draws up the professional status in consultation with teachers. The employee participation therefore has no formal role in the creation of a professional statute. The employee representatives can of course inquire about the state of affairs on the basis of the right of initiative.

  • Why is there no sample or model professional status available?

    Every school is different and the professional statute gives teachers the space to give substance to their own say in consultation with school leaders and administrators. An example or model of professional status can provide too much direction. In addition, a good conversation is the most important basis for the statute and that happens differently at every school.