Does a 5 nearly 6 year old have to go to kita?

60 posts in this topic

Posted

Hi we moved to Blankenburg recently and have been looking for a kita for my daughter who is 6 in January.I have got the vouchers that you need. I do not drive so have been looking for ones close by. There are 2 but have no places. All other kitas are a bus sometimes 2 bus rides away. This is too far for us really and will be expensive as we will have to pay for monthly passes. So my question is does she have to go to kita legally or can I keep her at home until she starts school in August next year?

Thanks in advance for any help.

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Posted

I don't believe they have made it mandatory (although they keep trying). But unless your daughter is fluent in German, she will fail 1st grade and have her life pretty blighted if she doesn't go (it's free to you, by the way).

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Posted

does she have to go to kita legally

No, she doesn't have to go. There's no Kindergartenpflicht.

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Posted

unless your daughter is fluent in German, she will fail 1st grade and have her life pretty blighted if she doesn't go

This is a slight exaggeration, but gail123 is giving you a great big hint (nudge nudge, wink wink) that it will be greatly to your daughter's advantage if you bite the bullet and put her in a Kita. Remember, it's about her.

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Posted

no she is not fluent in german and i understand it is better for her to go. I really do not think she will fail as I have quite a few months to help her learn some german. I also have another daughter who is 11 and has recently started school here and speaks very little german but is learning ok.

I really would prefer her to go to kita rather than not but 100euro a month for travel is alot of money.

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Posted

It is not compulsory, however, if both parents are foreign (meaning the kid speaks no good German) you are supposed to send the kid at least one year to KiTa in order to learn German. They may tell you to take your kid first to the KiTa when you try to register him/her at the school. But I do not know if they really enforce that rule.

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Posted

I already have a school place for her for next August at the school my other daughter is going to.

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Posted

It is difficult to refrain to say something nasty when the system is giving you childcare for free and you complain about the transportation costs of bringing the kid there. And when the weather gets better you can bring her by bicycle anyway.

Berlin thread after all.

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Posted

Krieg there really is no need to be so rude. I have just asked a simple question and didn't need your nasty reply. I know the childcare is free and thats fantastic but 100euro a month is not small change to us. Even though the childcare is free it is not essential that I have childcare as I am at home anyway so I am not looking for someone to look after my daughter for free.

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Posted

It is free for the child to travel on public transport. There are lots of nice Kitas in and near Pankow, I have lived here for 13 years in a row and on and off before that. My child went to Berlin Kids International which is only a short trip from Pankow and so a cheaper "short trip" ticket. There are also kitas in Pankow where I know they have some English speaking kid - like Lara on tBerlinerstr near the Station. 6 is late though so I don't know how the Kitas would view it.

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Posted

It used to be free until they go to school. I see that it has changed now. It's hard for ticket inspectors to tell the difference though, you could tell your child to say she is 5 if asked.Or choose a kita where you could walk to it. Kita is important for the kids in making that jump to school, school is quite tough here.I would definitely look for a kita fast for the sake of your child.

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Posted

No, it is until they turn 6, whether in school or not. But she will get a free Schuleraufweis and then it is 26/month and even cheaper with an abo. How could it be 100 euros a month? A private bus to school costs less than that. And yes- she will fail first grade unless you are able (because you are mother tongue fluent in German) to make her so between then and now. 1st grade in Germany is not like in other places- your child is expected to not read (in fact, they frown on home teaching) but to be fluent in German and to be orderly (and to know how to craft). Vorschule is free because the German school system is so unforgiving that it needs to be and still the deck is tremendously stacked against children with an "immigrant background". And my husband is German with a degree and we still see it.

Take it seriously. I actually think they would bounce your daughter back to kita within a month, but in any case she would probably need to repeat first. As someone who has suffered with a bad teacher (remember, they teach two years at a time) and had great ones, I think I understand the German school system in Berlin.

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Posted

What crap- get an abo and it's 58 euros. And if you are on HarzIV, it's a lot less (and your child would be free). The Familienamt will bend over backwards to help you get a reasonable place so your child can be integrated.

This is about what you want to do, not what is good for your child. My daughter was in 1st at 6 and she is thriving. Your daughter is looking to be late and set up for failure.

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Posted

We are berlin tax payers too as my husband works here. We are not freeloaders.

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Posted

have her life pretty blighted if she doesn't go

My GerMan never attended Kita. It's ALL starting to make sense... :rolleyes:

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Posted

mlovett- life was different in those days. Did your GerMan arrive in Berlin at 6 without the language?

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Posted

I was trying to be ironic, hence the smiley.

Was life really so different? Anyhoo, no, he arrived in the States without a grasp of the language. :P

Kita will absolutely help her daughter with the language, but I suppose she could also repeat the first grade. My husband repeated a grade, and it didn't blight his life.

I helped a German expat kid last year at my son's school who started with ZERO English. He didn't have to repeat the year. Kids are pretty amazing and resilient when it comes to picking up language at age 6. My parents claim I was fluent in Spanish [in Spain] within ~ 6 months.

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Posted

A child at that age will be doing the "Vorschule" program in kindergarten, and it's a very important part of their schooling. When your child shows up at school without the benefit of this program (not just the language aspect, but every aspect), she will be removed from class within the first 2 weeks (unless she's some sort of prodigy). But don't worry, the school system has a Vorschule program as well. There's a 99% chance it won't be as conveniently located as your kindergarten option.

One of my son's German friends experienced this. German is his only language and he had gone through the Vorschule program, but he still wasn't able to keep up with the lessons and was gone by the end of the second week. He even had the benefit of the district's most experienced teacher (retired at the end of that year).

I thought the Vorschule year was mandatory, maybe it's just free, or maybe it's just in Hessen, but I thought it was made mandatory last year.

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Posted

I did not suggest you were freeloaders. My point is the education system here is funded by taxpayers, and it is great if you are also contributing - more reason to use the service, which many peoplein other countries round the world would give their right hand for.

My son was born when we lived in Oxford in England, and monthly cost for playgroup services that would be toleable were around 1000 euros. Here you will pay 23 euros or so to cover lunch for kids age 3 and over, you buy a monthly ticket for yourself to get around Berlin- as pointed out - 58 euros, and surely you need that anyway unless you plan to sit at home all the time - and a few quid per month for your child on the public transport. Surely if you earn enough money to pay tax, this small amount to cover your transport costs and your kids future education possibilities

is no a problem!

Colin

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Posted

Everybody seems to agree that a child profits a lot from a time in a Kindergarten, esp. when one or both parents aren't locals and due to this the child has little exposure to the language of the natives. The OP is thinking it's not worth spending € 100.- per month (not a lump sum, not a fortune) . Well, a lot of those (often turkish) parents with kids who failed in school think the same.

The OP asked whether it's mandatory - no, it isn't. Fertig.

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