Expats will find that their experience of schooling in Germany is likely to differ depending on where they are based within the country. Germany has a decentralised system of education whereby the national government plays a minor role and responsibility for schools lies with individual states (known as lander).
Schooling in Germany is compulsory from the ages of seven to eighteen but many parents send their children to a nursery or kindergarten from the age of three.
The German approach to education is seen as progressive as it makes provisions to cater for students of all abilities. Beyond the traditional academic subjects such as maths, science, geography, history and languages, the German system also provides opportunities for students to pursue vocational disciplines if they are more suited to those.