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Compulsory education

All children who have reached the age of six up to a fixed cut-off date will be required to attend school at the beginning of the following school year.

At the request of their legal guardians, younger children may be admitted to school if they have the necessary physical and mental capacity to attend school and are sufficiently developed in their social behaviour. School-aged children who are not yet sufficiently developed physically, mentally or in their social behaviour can be deferred by one year. They may be obliged to attend a school kindergarten in order to promote their development.

The cut-off date for compulsory education in Lower Saxony will be moved in three steps from 30 June of each year to 30 September. In order to give school authorities and parents sufficient time to adapt to the change, for the first time in 2010 children who had reached the age of six by 31 July 2010 were admitted to school. 2011 will then be the cut-off date of 31 August and from 2012 30 September. This means that you have to pay school

  • at the beginning of the 2011/2012 school year, all children who are in their sixth year from 1 August 2010 to 31 August 2011,
  • at the beginning of the school year 2012/ 2013 all children who complete the age of six by 30 September (2012).

From 2012, the new version of the Lower Saxony School Act (NSchG) will apply for the first time and will then apply accordingly for the following school years - the cut-off date will then be 30 September.

Compulsory schooling generally lasts 12 years. It is divided into at least nine years of full-time compulsory education in primary and lower secondary education. Subsequently, compulsory education in upper secondary education is fulfilled by attending a general or vocational school or for trainees by attending vocational school. It may also be shortened on a case-by-case basis.

Exceptions may be allowed if pupils have skipped a school year or attended a school abroad. The duration of a deferral from school attendance and the third school year in the entry level can be counted towards schooling. The duration of compulsory schooling is also taken into account.

For more information:

Source: Serviceportal Niedersachsen (Portalverbund des Bundes und der Länder)

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