I am interested in BBS. Is my child eligible for enrollment at BBS if s/he does not speak German/ English yet?
We enroll students who are raised as German and English native speakers.
We teach the Berlin State Curriculum as well as the International Primary Curriculum and the UK National Curriculum of England and Wales. Language proficiency in both English and German is therefore a prerequisite for admission.
Children applying for grades 2-13 must be able to speak and write in both languages.
Older students who have one language more dominant than the other, are expected to have at least a B1/ B2 level in the “non-mother tongue” language.
We assess the language skills before enrollment to ensure that the child is suited to our programme and can follow both curricula.
Applications for bilingual and bi-literate children applying from abroad, must include the last two report cards.
For detailed information on the admissions procedure, please see Admissions Procedure
What does the English/ German assessment look like?
We assess the language skills of the child by engaging them in conversation. It is not possible nor recommended to prepare the child for the assessment as it is not a test.We just try to find out in a playful way whether the child would be able to follow our curricula in German and English.
Grades 2 to 6
Besides oral assessment, we evaluate the reading and writing skills according to the age group. Children must be able to perform at an age-appropriate level since we do not have a language support programme.
Applicants for Secondary School generally join the parent interview and take a written test afterward. The same rules as in primary school apply. Since we do not have a language support programme, the students must be able to perform in both languages at an age-appropriate level.
Do you offer alternative dates for the assessment if we cannot make it?
Due to the high number of applicants, it is no longer possible for us to accommodate special requests for assessment dates. Therefore, we publish the date of assessment on our website well ahead of time to allow applicants plenty of time to plan.
Do you arrange trial days?
We arrange visiting or trial days as of Grade 1 (NB: not for the upcoming Grade 1 and 7) when an opening becomes available. Please contact the admissions staff.
Do you have a language support programme for students who do not yet speak German / English?
Unlike other international schools, we do not have a support programme, e.g. for students coming from abroad. Due to this, we are unable to consider students with basic or no language skills in either German or English.
Additional tutoring has to be covered and organised by the parents and is not followed-up by BBS.
Do you have an Open House?
Our annual Open Houses take place in September (Primary School) and January (Secondary School). The exact dates are published on the website well ahead of time.
Open Houses are a great opportunity to get to know the school, familiarise yourself with our concept and meet staff as well as students and families.
Is it possible to visit the school if I have missed the Open House?
Our parents organise school tours on a regular basis. Please, contact the admissions coordinators well ahead of your planned visit. Please note that we do not offer school tour for potential grade 1 families after the 30th of September.
Is it possible to arrange for individual appointments?
It is important to us to meet and get to know prospective families and applicants.
Once we have received a complete application, the admissions coordinators will contact you. Due to high demand, we arrange for individual appointments only when we have an opening or a chance for an opening in the appropriate grade in the near future.
Parents of children who have successfully passed the language assessment of grade 1 and 7 will be invited for an interview.
When do I have to apply? Is there a deadline?
For Grade 1, the deadline is September / October of the year prior to enrollment.
For Grade 7, the deadline is the end of March of the enrollment year. Exact dates are published on our website well ahead of time.
Applications for grades 2-6 and 8-13 will be processed on an ongoing basis depending on availability in the appropriate grade.
Can I put myself on a waiting list for Grade 1 or 7 more than a year in advance?
No. For administrative reasons this is not an option. Please follow the admissions procedure guidelines.
What is the criteria for admission?
A good command of both German and English is a prerequisite for enrollment at BBS. Applicants for grades 2-13 must be bilingual and biliterate.
BBS considers itself a community and parent involvement is required.
We also take great pride in having families from different backgrounds – social-economic, religious, race, etc.
Additionally, applicants for grades 11-13 (gymnasiale Oberstufe) must have passed MSA+ (or hold an equivalent qualification).
What does it cost?
Tuition fees range between 100 and a maximum of 300 EUR per month (Primary School, excl. Hort fees), and between 100 and a maximum of 513 EUR per month (Secondary School), depending on family income.
Families with two, three or more children at Berlin Bilingual School pay a reduced fee.
A limited number of subsidised places are available annually upon application.
Primary School: berlin-bilingual-school.de/de/primary-school/fees
Secondary School: berlin-bilingual-school.de/de/secondary-school/fees
How do you calculate the school fees for parents who are separated?
If both parents share custody of the student in question, then both incomes are taken into consideration when calculating school fees. If one parent has sole custody, only their income is taken into consideration.
Where do I apply for a Hort voucher (Primary School)?
Please contact your local Bezirksamt / Jugendamt: service.berlin.de/bezirksaemter
My child has two friends attending BBS. Can I tell the admissions coordinator the specific class I want my child to attend?
No. New students are automatically assigned to the respective class with the lower number of students.
Why do parents become members of the Berlin Kids International association?
Parent participation is essential to the unique spirit of Berlin Bilingual School. The school was founded by parents and it continues to be shaped by their active involvement.
As one of two stakeholders of the Berlin Bilingual School gGmbH, BKI e.V. is responsible for ensuring that the school’s educational concept is upheld and mission statement is supported.
Association meetings are central to communicating important updates about the school, parent work group reports, informing on board work and gathering feedback from members. Association membership consists largely of parents of students but is open to anyone involved with or interested in the school.
What are the regulations of parent involvement?
Parent work not only makes it possible to run the school on a limited budget; it also ensures that parents feel welcome and encouraged to take an active part in their children’s education.
Parents of BBS students do parent work to the extent of four hours per month per family. Single parents may do a reduced number of two hours per month.
However, it is also possible to pay an amount of €12 for each hour of parent work instead.
Can my child leave school early to attend sport / music lesson they are enrolled in?
No, BBS is a mandatory all-day school. Earlier dismissal is only possible for medical reasons.
What qualifications can my child get at BBS?
Sekundarstufe 1 (grades 1-10) ends with MSA (Mittlerer Schulabschluss). Students who pass the exams with MSA+ are approved for Sekundarstufe 2 (gymnasiale Oberstufe), which consists of grades 11-13 and ends with (bilingual) Abitur.
Do I need to prove measles vaccination?
Yes. We are obliged by law to ask you for proof of your child’s vaccination or a doctor’s certificate stating the unvaccinability, e.g. due to an allergy.
Please, show proof to our admissions coordinator (primary or secondary). Providing a copy does not suffice.
If not, we will have to report to Gesundheitsamt.
What is the onboarding process for Grade 7 students like?
At the beginning of the school year, two days are designated for the onboarding process of 7th graders: “How to BBS”. The students spend this time getting to know each other and their teachers, team building and learning about the pedagogical values of BBS.
What is this German Einschulung?
The Einschulung of Grade 1 students takes place on the Saturday following the first week of school. This is meant to celebrate the transition from kindergarten to school. Children bring a Schultüte, traditionally filled with school materials toys and sweets. After a short ceremony, they have their first lesson in the classroom.