Educational System in Germany

Education and the right for everyone to recieve education is given by the German constitution. Everybody has to attend school for at least nine years. But these obligatory years are not the beginning of the educational process in Germany.

Most of the children begin their education in the kindergarten. Children between three and seven years attend the kindergarten. Like every educational institution, kindergarten is led by the government or by private institutions like for example the catholic or evangelic church.

The main focus in kindergarten is of course non-formal learning. Playing, doing handcrafts, singing etc. are the first steps to prepare the children for their formal learning at school.

The period of  formal learning at school starts at primary school for four years. Skills like reading, writing (in English and German), mathematics, basic knowledge in geography, natural science, art, sports  (swimming) and many more are the focus of the primary school.

The proficiency is rated by the teachers. Not always by using marks, but in case of deficits in the pupils knowledge, it is possible to repeat the current year.

After attending primary school and passing every year, the teacher decides together with the parents how to continue the educational process. Three different kinds of school are possible. Which school to attend is measured by the pupils proficiency. Everybody has the possibility to attend the so called “Hauptschule”. If the child's proficiency is good, it has the possibility to attend the “Realschule” and the “Gymnasium”, which is for 'outstanding' pupils. Of course in case of increasing or decreasing proficiency it is possible to change the school.

“Hautschule” and “Realschule” are at least six years of gaining every necessary knowledge in order to choose an education for jobs such as carpenter, merchant, mechanics etc. With these degrees one are not allowed to study at an university, but it is possible to continue education at school to get the necessary degrees.

If the child attends the “Gymnasium” and passes the final exam after nine to eight years, it already have the permission to study at an university in order to become for example a teacher, doctor, lawyer etc.

As one can see, the German educational system is very well structured and offers to everybody to get the best education possible, measured at one's personal proficiencies and efforts.

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