Early childcare "Kinderkrippen" (children up to the age of three years)
Childcare for children up to the age of three years in so-called "Kinderkrippen" (nurseries). These childcare facilities look after children half days of full days in groups of up to twelve children. Usually a warm meal is offered and can be booked individually. Costs vary, however, as a rule of thumb, you should plan to spend around 150 Euros for half-day childcare per month.
Since there is a severe shortage of places in some areas and places are in high demand, please try to organize childcare at the earliest opportunity. In certain circumstances you may have to wait several months for a place for your child.
Please find more information on the topic "childcare" online on the city of Bamberg's KiTa-Portal. On the WebKITA page you may register for places in Bamberg's childcare facilities.
Pre-school care "Kindergarten" (children from three to six years)
In Germany children from the age of three until the age of six years - when they usually start school - can attend kindergarten in mixed-age groups. Participation is voluntary.
Children attend kindergarten either half-day, full-time or on a flexible schedule basis. In many facilities a warm lunch is offered for an additional charge.
The Bavarian kindergarten year starts in September and ends in August. Joining the group in the middle of the year is only possible if there are free places available. Costs are graded according to the service actually used (temporal extent of care, lunch). A half-day kindergarten place is between 80 Euros and 120 Euros per month. In some kindergartens the fees are income-dependent.
The city of Bamberg provides information on their range of kindergartens on the internet under the heading of KiTa-Portal. On the WebKITA page you may apply or register for one or several kindergartens of your choice.
Additional day care offers
- Childminders ("Tagesmütter" or "Tagesväter")
Childminders provide individualized childcare for up to five children in their own premises and offer more flexible care times. For at least ten hours per week children are looked after in a regular manner for several hours or on a daily basis.
Childminders undergo a special training to do their jobs and require an official authorization from the responsible Youth Welfare Office ("Jugendamt"). Under certain conditions childcare carried out by childminders can be financially supported by the Youth Welfare Office.
Further information is provided on the webpage of Bamberg's Stadtjugendamt where there is also a way to search for available childminders.
- Large day care centers ("Großtagespflege")
This type of child daycare is pursued by at least two qualified childminders who look after up to ten children in rented rooms. Care times can be arranged according to one's needs, however, the minimal care time is usually ten hours per week.
You will find information on available places in large day care centers in Bamberg on the Stadtjugendamt's (Youth Welfare Office) webpage.
Babysitters who look after your children for a few hours during the day or in the evening can be found via the child protection agency ("Kinderschutzbund") or University of Bamberg's Babysitterpool. Another promising way of finding a trustworthy babysitter is to ask neighbours or colleagues for recommendations.
- Last but not least
Bamberg's Youth Welfare Office provides a comprehensive list of all different available childcare facilities in Bamberg.
School attendance is compulsory for German and foreign children living in Germany between the age of six and 15 years. If you plan a longer stay in Germany you are obliged to enroll your child at a school of Bamberg or you must apply for exemption from compulsory education.
Attendance of public schools is free of charge in Germany. In Bavaria the school year starts in September, respectively, after six weeks of summer holidays.
The children's school education begins with "Grundschule" (primary school - first to forth grade). At the end of the fourth grade, it is decided which secondary school the child will attend. In Bavaria there are basically three different types of public secondary schools:
- Mittelschule, where students graduate after ninth grade ("Hauptschulabschluss") or after tenth grade ("Mittlere Reife")
- Realschule, which is completed after tenth grade with "Mittlere Reife"
- Gymnasium, graduation after twelfth grade with "Abitur" as school-leaving certificate, which is the German university entrance qualification. Fachoberschulen (technical colleges) and berufliche Oberschulen (vocational schools) allow for a limited university access (i.e. specific study subjects)
- Students with learning difficulties can attend a school for children with special needs ("Förderschule")
- A list of all schools in Bamberg is provided on the City of Bamberg's homepage
Choice of school
Usually, children attend the primary school which is closest to their home. Secondary schools on the other hand offer different specializations (e.g. foreign languages, music, natural sciences) and are chosen according to the children's interests and performances. Classes are usually given in German. Only primary schools offer special German lessons for foreign children who do not have sufficient knowledge of German. However, two of Bamberg's secondary schools, Mittelschule Gaustadt and Erlöserschule, have so-called transition classes ("Übergangsklassen") for pupils of all ages with no or only poor knowledge of the German language. Although the main focus is on the language training, the children are also prepared for integration into the German education system and society.
Classes take place almost exclusively in the mornings, usually from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Primary school often finishes even earlier (between around 11.15 a.m. and 12.15 p.m.). Usually, the children have to do homework for the next day in the afternoons. In secondary schools there are additional sessions on one or two days in the afternoon.
Many primary schools have lunch-time supervision until 3 p.m. at the latest, or after-school care where the children can be supervised until the late afternoon and during the holidays. Parents must pay for lunch-time supervision and after-school care. Costs vary (lunch-time supervision starting at 45 Euros, after-school care at 120 Euros per month).
Private and international schools
Attending private or international schools, of which there are only few in Germany, is subject to tuition fees. Among the private primary schools in the surrounding area of Bamberg there is Montessori-Schule (in Bamberg) as well as Grundschule Schloss Thiergarten in Bayreuth, which offers bilingual classes in German and English. Furthermore, there is the Franconian International School in Erlangen, a private school where English is the instruction language for all children from the first until the twelfth grade. In addition, the state-run Realschule Steigerwaldschule in Ebrach has bilingual classes, but only for a few subjects.
If you are unsure about which school to enrol your child in, please contact the Welcome Center. We will be happy to give you further information and help you with the application.
Information on the school system (holiday schedule, intercultural education, curricula, school profiles, students' exchange and travel, language promotion, teaching and learning).
German Education Server
Information portal on the German education system
An information portal run by the Federal Government and the 16 Federal States in the federal Republic of Germany on the German federal education system.
German Education Server
Schools and Child Care in Germany
Information on child care, Germany's school system and practical hints on "how to recognize a good school".
Make it in Germany
International Schools in Germany
Overview of international schools in Germany that offer International Baccalaureate programmes.
International Baccalaureate Organisation (IBO)