Solln area: the good, the bad, the ugly? (have 3yr and 5yr old)

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Gutenabend! My first post here :blink:. So, my wife and I need to reassure ourselves that moving to Munich is a great idea. It's likely I could do this via my current employer but my wife would have to leave her job. I think we'd have about 2000 Euros to spend on rent (cold) per month but what we really need to make our plans a bit more concrete is an area to focus on. Solln seems worth a shot but we need to be sure there are decent kindergartens and primary schools in that area that we could feasibly get our kids into. Feel free to point me at stuff I can read myself. I am finding it difficult sussing out how to get an idea of whether the kindergartens in the area (found via googlemaps) are great/terrible. Any help massively appreciated! I would anticipate arriving in Munich in March. Our wee rascals are 3 and 5 this month so not sure if that means the eldest would go to primary school at the end of next year? Not looking at private/ex-pat schools BTW. Latin languages no problem here but nobody in the family speaks German. We certainly will throw ourselves at it if we decide to go! Obrigado/grazie/merci/gracias/danke schoen!! Malc.

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5 hours ago, Malc McMUC said:

Gutenabend! My first post here :blink:. So, my wife and I need to reassure ourselves that moving to Munich is a great idea. It's likely I could do this via my current employer but my wife would have to leave her job. I think we'd have about 2000 Euros to spend on rent (cold) per month but what we really need to make our plans a bit more concrete is an area to focus on. Solln seems worth a shot but we need to be sure there are decent kindergartens and primary schools in that area that we could feasibly get our kids into. Feel free to point me at stuff I can read myself. I am finding it difficult sussing out how to get an idea of whether the kindergartens in the area (found via googlemaps) are great/terrible. Any help massively appreciated! I would anticipate arriving in Munich in March. Our wee rascals are 3 and 5 this month so not sure if that means the eldest would go to primary school at the end of next year? Not looking at private/ex-pat schools BTW. Latin languages no problem here but nobody in the family speaks German. We certainly will throw ourselves at it if we decide to go! Obrigado/grazie/merci/gracias/danke schoen!! Malc.

 

Hi and welcome to Toytown.

I'm really impressed with your post because your budget is 2000 Euro for cold rent. Wow I'm couldn't resist to ask (just curious) how much a family should earn per month to be willing to pay that. What do you do?

 

Cheers

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6 hours ago, Malc McMUC said:

 we need to be sure there are decent kindergartens and primary schools in that area that we could feasibly get our kids into

Wrong country for decent kindergartens.

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Regarding rent Sarabyrd wrote a great piece on renting here, it's very very different here.

 

 General tips when renting

 

Rental Wiki

 

Sollin is the rich area of Munich and lived next door and I wasn't a huge fan, most of the apartments are older  and dark due to too many evergreen trees. Obersendling which is next door is much nicer. Hundreds of new places just went up. 

 

A rough guide but an apartwould go for around 1200 cold  and a house around 2000 cold. 

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16 hours ago, MikeMelga said:

Wrong country for decent kindergartens.

 

A bit off topic but can I ask - what don't you like about German kindergarten. I only have knowledge of one but I much prefer how it focuses much more on social learning than learning to read and write etc from an early age. 

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Kindergartens in Germany are a recent thing.

Most of them still think Montessori is the greatest pedagogic approach, while other countries have moved on.

 

The qualification of educators is quite low and even lower in helpers.

There is a lack of structured and recurrent report. I expected a weekly talk (5-10min) with each parent, describing what was achieved during the week and what is not going so well. Instead, we get an annual report.

 

They don't care if the kid has snort dripping, if he is properly dressed for the weather, etc.

 

Overall, it seems they choose the pedagogic "concept" closer to "let them do what they want, I don't give a shit, let me sit in a corner and watch paint dry."

 

Not to mention "minor" things like grouping all foreigners in the same room, disconsideration of bilingual children, unsuitable food for children, etc.

 

And I am talking about private Kindergartens, I can't even imagine public ones.

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What do you mean by "recent", seeing as Kindergarten is a German word that was introduced into the English language it would seem logical that  Kindergartens have been around for quite a while

Quote

Der Kindergarten geht auf Friedrich Fröbel (1782-1852) zurück.

 

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I was just quicker on the keyboard, which reminds me of when I first joined Toytown - you had to type very quickly to post on a thread before somebody posted what you were going to. :lol: 

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6 minutes ago, Uncle Nick said:

What do you mean by "recent", seeing as Kindergarten is a German word that was introduced into the English language it would seem logical that  Kindergartens have been around for quite a while

 

Not in large numbers, only started to be common after 2000. 

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5 minutes ago, Uncle Nick said:

I was just quicker on the keyboard, which reminds me of when I first joined Toytown - you had to type very quickly to post on a thread before somebody posted what you were going to. :lol: 

Yep.... as I said already, great minds think alike.... :)

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3 minutes ago, MikeMelga said:

Not in large numbers, only started to be common after 2000. 

We are not talking about the numbers but the phenomen itself.

 

regards,

Uncle Nick & Klubbnika

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Hi...we live in Solln with a 3 year old and are a bi-lingual family. We live in an apartment and like it very much there as it's much quieter than the city...lots of forests to explore and we have a great view of the sunset from our flat every evening. We have chosen to go to an English speaking kindergarten in the city (about 30 minutes away...which is fine for us as we work there), but our neighbors are very happy with their kindergarten and there are quite a few around. I don't know how they are or what your requirements are, so you would need to check them out for yourself. I also don't know what rents are like outside of our place, but for 2000 Euros I imagine you could get a 3 bedroom apartment. Good luck!! 

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Hi

we live in Solln. It is a very quite area, and there are kindergardens, also bilingual as already stated. Plenty of supermarkets, but no real shopping centres...which is fine with us, but might be a problem for someone.

Schools in the area are mainly German public, with exception for the Italian-German one.

there are also some German private like Isarschule and St Anna.

If you stay closer to Aidenbachstrasse, you can get to the city centre also via subway (U3).

There are new houses/apartment recently constructed.

We like there, is quite being not far from the city centre.

Happy to help further. Just PM me

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Hi!

We are moving to Solln from the UK in 3 weeks with our two boys (5 and 7).

Solln looks to be a lovely area  - very excited and can't wait to arrive and meet some new people...!

So much to do first though! 

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You didn't say where you're coming from, but I'll answer from an American/English perspective.

 

Regarding Kindergarten: note that German "Kindergarten" of KiGa is American preschool and "Vorschule" is the American kindergarten (confusing) is usually for 3 years following day-care and also that Bavaria for the most part does not have Vorschule as a separate school and/or integrated into elementary school (other German states like Hamburg do), but Vorschule is instead usually directly integrated into the last year of "Kindergarten", usually as mornings 2-3 days/week.

 

There are basically 3 options: public, private and self-run (Elternitiativ).

The public ones are generally very good (standards are very high) BUT it is quite a jump-through-hoops thing to get a spot and for the most part, spots are assigned around Feb-May FOR THE FOLLOWING SEPTEMBER! Thus, you would need to apply soon, although some require that you first have a local address (yes, the system is not designed for people to move!). Inexpensive by non-German standards, between 300-400/month (day care with fewer kids per caregiver costs a bit more). If you follow the German way then it is fine. If you expect to call, apply, sign up, pay and start next month, you're in for major surprises. And you will likely be expected to have some German knowledge. Especially if both parents will be working, also note that 17h pickup time is considered *long* and many just outside of Munich areas "kindly" have pickup at 4pm, 3pm or even 2pm! (as the mom is of course available in conservative Bavaria -- actually the good Bavarian mom should not be working to receive the "Herdprämie" http://www.sueddeutsche.de/bayern/herdpraemie-das-betreuungsgeld-wird-bayerisch-1.2678265).

 

While there is a new German law guaranteeing every child a spot, there is also a lack of qualified caregivers, so not following every rule/requirement/deadline is a good way to get around this.

 

Private can be good and getting a spot is usually easier (still don't assume like in other countries though), but cost about 2-3 times as much. There are also a few elite private bilingual at >1200/month that should be easy to arrange.

 

Self-run (Elternitiativ) also look nice, but you usually have to be an involved parent and do duties. Offers probably the highest chance of finding a good English bilingual kindergarten. However I don't think there are any in Solln (2-3 in Sendling, which is south of Munich but much more central. I forgot exactly, but Chocolate Butterflies I think is one).

 

Oh, and some employers will also help with Kindergarten (some have contracts with preference for spots and others even have their own). Worth checking at least.

 

School is more complicated but basically you have the German public (mostly good but all-German speaking), a few not-too-expensive private schools (say 500/month) and then the elite private schools that are very pricey (e.g. MIS in Starnberg). There is a not-so-expensive private school in Pullach (neighboring town just south of Solln) that has a good reputation and the Isar-Schule that is in Obersendling/Isartor that is bilingual English-German, plus a few others. Should be doable although you'll have to do lots of research in advance.

 

We are so more-than-satisfied/ecstatic about our public Kindergarten in Obersendling: great caregivers, great management, great building with a good playground and they even go out sledding frequently.

 

Oh, and regarding starting school, Bavaria is still part of Germany, so the rules are strict: "Muss-Kind" children are required to start school if 6 years old on September 30th:

Quote

Einschulungsalter, Stichtag

Mit Beginn des Schuljahres werden alle Kinder schulpflichtig, die bis zum 30.9. (Stichtag) sechs Jahre alt werden oder bereits einmal von der Aufnahme in die Grundschule zurückgestellt wurden.

A "Kann-Kind" is then birthday October-December who may opt to start. And it is possible to get out of the "Muss-Kind" with an official testament from a qualified psychologist/doctor (I don't know the exact rules, but you just have to follow the rules and it's no problem).

 

So if your oldest turned 5 this month, then will should be starting the last year of Kindergarten/Vorschule next fall. The younger should also start Kindergarten next fall at 3 and depending on birthday might be able to start earlier. So you could probably try and get both kids into the same kindergarten, which makes things easier logistically.

 

Solln is considered a very nice area and is pretty popular with expats. It is very scenic, has no bad areas (Parkstadt-Solln is of course less desirable as it's OMG highrise and includes some social assistance), and offers lots of community activities, parks, sports clubs and the like. However, I would agree with some of the other posters that the adjacent community Obersendling to the north is in many ways an even better option (that's where we live too). Sendling is also great if you like more urban (where we used to live pre-kids), but with Solln as your starting point, I would say Obersendling is a good mix of near-urban but more family-friendly plus the possibility to have a yard. In comparison, Solln is an older community with larger houses but also in general an older population (for the most part the only people who can afford to buy there have inherited their house, as family-sized house prices start at about 1 million).

 

Obersendling also has good public transit (U-Bahn, S-Bahn and buses), whereas Solln is just outside the U-Bahn range and thus only has one S-Bahn, so car(s) are more necessary in Solln.

 

Despite the comment above, the budget of 2000 cold for rent for a family of 4 sounds like a good starting point, especially if you desire a yard. A nice duplex or row house with a yard in Obersendling/Solln will run 1700-2500 cold (remember 200-500 more for utilities and other costs), with Obersendling offering a bit more for the money. A 4-room apartment (that's German-speak for a 3 bedroom) will run a little less.

 

So anyway, not to discourage you at all. Munich is a great place and wonderful for families, you just have to prepare like a German. Good luck!

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On 16.12.2016, 21:04:23, MikeMelga said:

Not in large numbers, only started to be common after 2000. 

What absolute nonsense. I´m born in the fifties and all my childhood friends were at a kindergarten.

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My parents in law were born before the war and they went to kindergarten!

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Danke MUC Amerikaner!

 

Having had a couple of days to have a look round with my wife a couple of weeks ago, we're really not wedded to Solln and to be honest it's probably not "city" enough for my wife so we'll probably not end up in Solln (if work lets me go), and my wife doesn't like to drive any way. We're coming from central London after all so are used to having the feeling that everything we need is close at hand (but being London, take bleedin' ages to get to and it's partly an illusion).

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On 16.12.2016, 19:43:56, MikeMelga said:

Kindergartens in Germany are a recent thing.

 

Oh for goodness sake, where do you get this stuff from?

 

Yes, some Germans like Montessori, there are Montessori nursery schools and schools in the UK too, and in many other countries. These educational philosophies are not really fashion items that are 'in' or 'out' but parts of a body of knowledge which are used to a greater or lesser extent at different times and in different places.

 

We have used 6 kindergartens over 4 kids in 3 locations. Waldorf, Lebenshilfe, Stadt, Evangelisch. They were all different, they were all chaotic from my UK perspective, and they all did stuff which I found odd, but my kids had amazing experiences which they would never have had in any UK setting. Only one would I not recommend on the grounds that it really did not have the individual child's best interests at heart. I would go so far as to say that the Kindergarten experience overall was one of the best things about being in Germany. 

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