Children's schools in Stuttgart - Germany

Advice for U.S. military families

Hi new here but I've been reading for about two weeks. We have our orders & will be in Stuttgart early-mid August. We are completely EXCITED! We are military, though I am Dutch citizen, we are bringing 4 of our 6 kids with us. The oldest will go to Patch High School (the forces that be willing). The younger three (11, 8 and 2) I'd like in German schools. Which is where all my questions come in.

Assuming we are approved to live on the "economy", what neighborhood has the best schools? Atmosphere, integration & acceptance, is as important if not more than actual education. We only have 3 years in Germany and I'd like for my kids to learn as much culture & language as possible. Grammar, math, science I can teach myself or get them tutors once we are back in the states.

I'm also very confused on the pay-for-school. How does it work if you are German, American, military? In other words, if they go to public school what is my cost? Or the international school? Or the DoD schools?

I greatly appreciate any insight you can give me & will happily follow any direction I'm pointed in.

Thank you so much for your fast reply. Yes! I have read those threads and they are full of useful information. I can't, however, find the specific information I would so love to have answered:

  • The actual names of schools or school district (is that terminology applicable?)
  • An explanation/guide/link of the pay-for-school system in Germany

  • bryan.wxup
    Hello, I can't send you a guide but I could at least fill you in a little on my experience on a German school (non-international school). My daughter began speaking German after about 3 months in the German system. No classes or tutoring at home. Now after about 6 months and a little tutoring with Mom & Dad she is on-par with kids about 1 year younger than she. We expect after 1 year she will be totally biligual.

    Our daughter, 5 as of June 09 has spent the last year (since Oct 08) in a German Kindergarten. She was 4 upon entry with 2 years of preschool (1 DODD in Japan and 1 private in Monterey, CA). We pay EUR 164 per month, not reimbursable until the 5th birthday. Rate is based on income. If you cannot prove income, then they simply take the highest amount.

    We are Angemeldet (registered) in our little Landkries (county) with the Steueramt (Tax office hq) in the Rathhaus (Town Council/Hall).
    This means, in order to get our child into the local school, we:
    1. Idenitified where we would live.
    2. Located the county(ies) where nearby schools were located.
    3. Visited many of the schools within walking distance, some others, during school hours (NOBODY is there after school is out!! Not even 1 minute after where we live!)
    4. Went to the Rathaus with Passports & military orders.
    5. Became "Angemeldet" with the county, registered all 4 in our family.
    6. A few days later recieved our tax ID numbers by Post
    7. Went into our chosen Kindergarten after prior appointment arrangement, turned in:
    - Anmeldebestätigung (registration certificate)
    - Steuerbrief (Tax letter)
    - Bank info for payment
    8. Each month 164 EUR is booked from our Sparkasse account.
    9. ...remains to be seen.

    We are working out now how the reimbursement process works since our child just turned non-DODDs school reimbursable age (5). I will let you know how it goes. I hope this helps.

    Note: I am Active duty in an isolated location supported by both NATO and USAFE/USAREUR. It IS legal to be angemeldet in Germany, but you must go about it the right way or you could put yourself into a tax headache. Best to find somebody at your base who has done it and copy his method. Also I speak fluent German so that helps. Good idea to befriend somebody who can speak German as well, not just for the paperwork portion of enrolling the child but for overall involvement in the school, you & the kids will get far more of the experience.
    Thank you so much that helps enormously! I speak fluent Dutch w/a sprinkling of German hopefully that will be a help to some extent. I think at this point I need to realize that my kids will not start school on the first day. We still don't have a place to live, we are still in the US until 8/14, though my husband will be in the Stuttgart area this weekend looking for a home.

    It is good to learn more about the process. It gives me a much better understanding of the steps I need to take. I really appreciate you taking the time to help out like this.

    Thank you!
    die englander
    i wondering what you mean?
    germanys schools are like private education almost compared to english state schools, are you worried about the quality of the education or the class of kids they will rub shoulders with?
    throw em in at the deep end and theyll be fine as for price can you put a price on your kids education? my opinion is to buy the best you can afford.
    and kids dont care they just gel!!
    As a Dutch citizen you can claim Kindergeld for your children, even though you are married to a US service member. This should pay for any kindergarten costs. It's quite a substantial amount each month too.

    If you want your kids to go to the International school it is approx $20,000 year that you must pay yourself, Dodds schools are free provided you are US military. (Some contractors have to pay approx $18,000) a year but as military it is free
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