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Schools in Berlin and Brandenburg


The school system in Germany is regulated differently in each federal state. Common to all states is the distinction between public and private schools and the compulsory school attendance. The compulsory schooling in Berlin and Brandenburg comprises 10 school years and is fulfilled by the attendance of the primary school and a secondary school.

In both federal states, the primary school usually comprises six years. Afterwards the children attend a secondary school and finish the school either after the 10th grade or after the 12th/13th grade (high school diploma).

An overview of mint-oriented schools in Berlin and Brandenburg can be found here.

Schools in Berlin

In Berlin the primary schools start for children at the age of six years. After the sixth grade (particularly talented students can already switch to a high school after the 4th grade) students change to a secondary school: either to a high school (Gymnasium, diploma in the 12th grade) or to a so called integrated secondary school (middle school graduation after the 10th grade or high school diploma after the 12th or 13th grade). The high school diploma (Abitur) is equivalent in both school forms.

A special school type are the Gemeinschaftsschulen. They offer a common school career for all students from the 1st to the 10th or even the 12th/13th grade. Furthermore there are several independent schools (eg church or Steiner schools).

Common to all schools is the examination for the middle school certificate in the 10th grade.

Families from abroad find various foreign-language information about the school system on the pages of the Berlin Senate.

On the school database of the Senate you can search specific school types, profiles and more (only available in German).

International/multilingual schools

There are many public and private international and multilingual schools in Berlin. A good overview can be found here.

A special type are the public European schools with bilingual classes right from the 1st grade. They are not an elite institution for particularly talented or diplomatic children, but allow equal access to a language-intensive education without school fees. This concept is currently available in nine language combinations at various school types.

International schools

Berlin offers different types of international schools such as state and private international schools as well as bilingual ones. Following this link, you will find further schools presented by the magazine New in the City Berlin. If you have questions, feel free to contact us at any time.

International state schools
John F. Kennedy School

International private schools
Berlin Brandenburg International School
Berlin British School
Berlin International School

Bilingual schools
Internationale Schule Berlin
Nelson Mandela School
Phorms Education

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Juliane Hanisch-Berndt
Head of Dual Career Service
Room EB 326, 3rd Floor
Stra├če des 17. Juni 145
10623 Berlin
Tel. +49 (0)30 314 - 75871

Office hours:
Tuesdays to Thursdays
9:00 - 16:00

Berlin School System