Information for Families
- Demand for childcare in Munich has increased over the past few years. We therefore recommend to start your search as early as possible.
- Childcare in Germany is provided in either a nursery (Krippe) for 0-3 year olds, a kindergarten for 3-6 year olds or an after-school facility (Hort) for 6-10 year olds.
- Possible childcare facilities: services for LMU staff, public or private institutions.
- School is compulsory in Germany from the age of 6 or 7. The vast majority of children in Germany attend public schools.
- Parents residing and working in Germany are entitled to receive financial benefits from the state, if certain conditions are fulfilled.
Childcare services for LMU staff
- LMU Munich childcare facilities - LMU Munich has a number of childcare facilities in place to help support the families of its faculties and staff. They are located throughout the city and vary in the services they offer. Please refer to the following link for a complete list of these nurseries and kindergartens (DE).
- LMU Family Service - The LMU Family Service is a cooperation between LMU Munich and the external service provider pme Familienservice. The LMU Family Service is free of charge for LMU employees and offers partial advice on finding childcare in your area to suit your individual situation and is well equipped with information on all types of childcare options in Munich. If you are interested in gaining access to the LMU Family Service, please contact LMU Gateway and we can help you with the registration process.
Childcare: 0 - 6 years
- Childcare in Germany is provided either in a nursery (Krippe - 0-3 years), or a kindergarten (3-6 years).
- Nurseries and kindergartens are either public or private. Among the private facilities there are also parent initiatives (Elterninitiativen) which imply a certain amount of personal involvement by the parents.
- Attending a kindergarten is voluntary in Germany, however, about 80% of the children in Germany do attend.
- In Munich, the application process for public childcare facilities is managed by an online platform called Kita Finder Plus (DE). You must register your child on this platform for the chosen facilities. Every year, there is a certain cut-off date (Stichtag) which is normally published on the city of Munich's website (DE). Nevertheless, it is highly recommended to pay an in-person visit to the nursery or kindergarten you want to apply for as well.
- Privately run facilities and parent initiatives (Elterninitiativen) have different application procedures. It is advisable to contact these directly. Fees for private childcare facilities tend to be higher.
- Please also see this comprehensive list (DE) of childcare options in Munich sorted by city district.
NOTE: Registration on the Kita Finder Plus does not automatically guarantee a slot within a childcare facility. Additionally, places in nurseries are even more limited than in kindergartens, therefore it is advisable to begin your search as early as possible.
International & alternative childcare options
An overview of bilingual and international childcare facilities can be found on the website of the Bildungsberatung International (DE).
It can be challenging to find a place for your child at a kindergarten or nursery. Parents therefore often resort to one of the following alternatives:
- Tagesmutter (person who looks after several children in her/his home during regular working hours)
- Kinderfrau (person who cares for your child/children in your home during the day)
- Leihoma (person over the age of 50 who cares for your child/children in your home during the day)
- Au Pair
The Bavarian public school system is known for producing high-performing pupils. It is run and funded by the federal government, but organized at state level. Though private schools exist, the vast majority of children in Munich attend public schools.
Elementary school (Grundschule)
- Comprises grades 1-4 starting at the age of 6 or 7 years
- Public school districts exist and as a rule, your child must attend the school assigned to your residential area (Schulsprengelprinzip - DE).
Secondary school (Weiterführende Schulen)
- After elementary school, pupils go on to attend either Mittelschule, Realschule or Gymnasium.
- Each school implies a different school-leaving qualification, therefore which type of secondary school a child can attend is determined by their scholastic achievement.
NOTE: If you have questions regarding which public school would best suit your child, you can contact either the Bavarian Ministry of Education (Kultusministerium) or the Public School Counselling Office in Munich (Staatliche Schulberatungsstelle München - DE).
If your child has no or little knowledge of the German language, an alternative can be to attend an international or a bilingual school. For queries concerning the language level of your child or international/bilingual schools in Munich, the office of the Bildungsberatung International (DE) is prepared to help. Open the PDF document called "Beratungszeiten und Sprachkompetenzen unseres Teams" to view a list of contact persons and their respective language competencies.
Afternoon care for school children
- Not all elementary schools in Munich offer all-day classes, so lessons usually end at lunchtime.
- To register for a public after-school facility (Hort), please use the Kita Finder Plus (DE). This kind of facility is usually open until 5 or 6 pm and also during school holidays (except for two weeks during the summer holidays).
In Germany, parents are entitled to (financial) benefits, if certain conditions are fulfilled. Below, you can find a quick overview of some of these benefits:
Child Benefit (Kindergeld)
Generally, all parents are entitled to child benefit from the child's birth until the age of 18. Child benefit is paid regardless of the parents’ income, but only one parent can receive the money paid out on behalf of the child. To claim child benefit, you must apply for it at the family benefits office called the Familienkasse (DE).
Parental allowance (Elterngeld)
In Germany, parental allowance is a state benefit compensating parents who choose to look after their child at home after birth instead of going to work. This is normally paid for the duration of one year after birth.
Aid during maternity leave (Mutterschaftsgeld)
Employed mothers-to-be are entitled to maternity leave, which means they do not have to work six weeks prior to giving birth and eight weeks after. However, during this time they are entitled to receiving their normal salary, which is paid in part by their employer and in part by their health insurance provider.
LMU Gateway is here to support you with questions you may have related to your individual family situation. We can help you with queries such as:
- Information and assistance in finding childcare facilities or schools in and around Munich
- What kind of childcare services does LMU Munich provide?
- Information and advice on the Bavarian school system
- Information on registration deadlines
- What kind of financial support exists for families and which requirements have to be met?
- Tips on leisure activities for families
Please contact us at LMU Gateway for more information. In addition, feel free to ask for a list of specific vocabulary (German and English) containing the most important terms in this field.
Childcare & Schools:
- LMU Munich (LMU family service - childcare)
- City of Munich (Childcare)
- Make-it-in-Germany (Childcare)
- Bildungsberatung International (DE)
- Bilingual Childcare & schools
- Work in Bavaria (Schools & childcare)
- BAMF (Parental allowance)