Registering your child at a basic education school (ages 3-11)

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Attention: to find out more about the potential impacts of Brexit on the schooling of British children residing in Luxembourg, consult our FAQ on the subject.

Children aged 3 to 11 are generally schooled in State-run basic schools. They can also be schooled in a private school, a European school, an international school or abroad. In exceptional cases, children may also be schooled at home.

In Luxembourg, schooling is compulsory for all children who turn 4 before 1 September of a given year.

Children aged 3 before 1 September are entitled to a place in an early education class if the parents so wish.

The communal authorities automatically register children at the designated school for their place of residence.

Who is concerned?

Optional early education

In principle, early education is open to all children living in Luxembourg of 3 years of age before 1 September of the current year, and who therefore are not yet subject to compulsory schooling. 

The communal council may also decide to allow admissions at the beginning of the 2nd and 3rd quarters.

Compulsory basic education (ages 4 to 11)

Each child living in Luxembourg of 4 years of age before 1 September must attend school.

How to proceed

Learning cycles

Basic schools are organised into 4 learning cycles:

  • Cycle 1: early education (optional year) and preschool;
  • Cycles 2, 3 and 4 of primary education.

The normal duration of a cycle is 2 years. Pupils move on to the next cycle if they have acquired the required knowledge and developed the required skills (the fundaments) by the end of the cycle.

When pupils exhibit exceptional progress, the pedagogical team may recommend they be admitted to the next cycle after just one year.

On the other hand, if pupils experience difficulty in achieving the required basics, the team may decide, during the course of the cycle, that spending a 3rd year in the current cycle will give them the time needed to develop the requisite skills. In that case, a personalised educational plan is established for the pupil.

During and at the end of the cycle, parents are kept regularly informed of their child's progress.

Enrolling in a State-run school in the commune of residence

Enrolling in an optional early education class

The communal administration of the place of residence sends parents a letter along with a form to fill in if they wish to apply for enrolment.

Since early childhood education is optional, parents are under no obligation to enrol their children. However, once a child is enrolled, the parents are required to ensure that their children regularly attend class.

After receiving the form, parents can enrol in person directly with the commune's administration department (or with the education/schools' department directly). They will need to produce the following:

  • the family record book;
  • the child's birth certificate;
  • the duly completed enrolment form.

Enrolling in (compulsory) basic education (ages 4 to 11)

In principle, all children living in Luxembourg must attend the designated public school in the educational district of their place of residence (i.e., that of their area or sector, which is closest to their place of residence).

By 15 April, parents will receive a letter from the communal administration of their place of residence, informing them of the start of compulsory schooling for their child (aged 4 on 1 September), and their automatic registration at a designated preschool for their place of residence.

A form is attached to the administration's letter.

To complete the enrolment, parents must go to the commune's administration department (or to the education/schools' department), where they will be required to provide the following documents:

  • the family record book;
  • the child's birth certificate;
  • a duly completed enrolment form.

At the parents' request and with the authorisation of the communal council, admission to the first cycle of basic education may be deferred by one year if the child's state of health or physical or mental development warrants doing so.

In such a case, the parents would need to submit their request to the communal administration, enclosing a medical certificate issued by a paediatrician.

Once places have been assigned, parents receive an acceptance letter containing all relevant information (place, term dates, times, etc.).

Enrolling in a different State-run school in the commune of residence, or in a State-run school in another commune

Parents must send a written request to the college of aldermen of the commune where they wish to send their child to school. The letter must specify the reasons for their request, and be sent before 1 May of the year prior to the start of the school year in question.

If the school system in the host commune can accommodate the child, the college of aldermen will grant the request, after having the parent's reasons checked by the relevant administrative services.

The college of aldermen will then notify the parents of its decision by no later than 15 May.

If the application is successful, the parents must inform the original commune within 8 days.

The following reasons are considered to be valid:

  • the child is cared for by a family member up to the 3rd degree inclusive (i.e., grandparents, uncles and aunts);
  • the child is cared for by a third party who is a state-registered childminder;
  • the child is cared for by a State-registered organisation in the socio-educational field; and
  • the professional circumstances of one of the 2 parents (this condition is not taken into consideration by certain communes, notably the City of Luxembourg).

To bring their child back into the school of their commune of residence, parents simply need to send a letter to the original communal administration. The child will automatically be enrolled on the list of students for the new school year. The communal administration will inform the commune where the child attended school during the current year.

Enrolling in a State-run school offering the European or British syllabus

Several free State-run schools offer primary education with special linguistic regimes and specific programmes, assessment systems and certifications:

Enrolling at a private, international or European school

The child must live in Luxembourg.

Parents may enrol their child by paying the corresponding tuition or a specific fee.

If a child is enrolled in a private institution, parents are required to inform the college of aldermen of the commune of residence by submitting an enrolment certificate to prove compliance with the compulsory schooling requirement.

There are 2 types of structure:

  • private schools, which follow the same educational structure and prepare for the same exams/certificates as the country's State-run schools;
  • international schools and the Waldorf School, which operate with their own assessment and certification systems.

Of the private establishments:

There are also the:

Home schooling

Parents wishing to home school their children must state their reasons in their application, and request express permission from the regional director.

Such authorisation may be time-limited, and the education is subject to inspection by the director.

Moving home during the course of a year

In principle, all children living in Luxembourg must attend the designated public school in the educational district of their place of residence (i.e., that of their area or sector, which is closest to their place of residence).

Parents, or those with parental responsibility for the child, must notify class teachers, as well as the commune's schooling department, of any change of school or residence during the school year.

They must also be notified of the contact details of the new establishment where the child will continue their schooling.

Online services and forms

Who to contact

Department of Primary Education

Department for the Schooling of Foreign Children (Service de la Scolarisation des Enfants Etrangers - SECAM)

Department of Education of Luxembourg City

  • Department of Education of Luxembourg City

    20, rue du Commerce L-1351 Luxembourg Luxembourg

Related procedures and links

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