Luxembourg Elementary/ Primary Education
In Luxembourg, school attendance is compulsory from age 4 to 16. From the age of 3, the child can join the Spillschoul.
In Luxembourg, we have different cycles of elementary school, how we enroll children into the school, etc. these are the things we are about to see in this article.
About the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.
Because of its small population (626,000 inhabitants in 2020, in an area of 2,586 sq.km.),
it is easy to forget that the Grand Duchy is a sovereign state in its own right. It is a founding Member State of the European Union, which it presides on a rotating basis.
Although the population is small in terms of numbers, it is highly diverse: more than 47% of residents are foreigners of more than 170 different nationalities; 84% are nationals
of a European Union member State.
Cross-border workers from France, Belgium, and Germany also play a vital role in the Luxembourg economy: more than 200,000 come into the Grand Duchy daily to work.
Immigration and cross-border mobility are reflected in the working population, 73% of whom are foreigners (46% cross-border workers and 27% foreign residents)1.
Diversity goes beyond passports: it is reflected in the languages spoken2, people’s socioeconomic origin, their migration experience, family and social histories, and their talents.
As a result of solid political determination, Luxembourg’s education system has considerably evolved in recent years, keeping with developments in Luxembourg society and an international environment that features digitalization and globalization.
This brochure provides an overview of the organization and the current functioning of the education system. It is intended for use by anyone, whether in the Grand Duchy or elsewhere, wanting to learn about the subject.
What is primary Education?
Primary education or elementary education is typically the first stage of formal education, coming after preschool/kindergarten and before secondary school. Primary education takes place in primary schools, elementary schools, or first schools and middle schools, depending on the location.
The International Standard Classification of Education considers primary education as a single-phase where programs are typically designed to provide fundamental reading, writing, and mathematics skills and establish a solid foundation for learning.
The school rhythm:
As a general rule, children attend school 3 full days, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm with a 2-hour lunch break and 2 half days in the morning on Tuesday and Thursday.
The school year starts on September 15 and ends on July 15. Vacation weeks are scheduled for :
one week in November for the All Saints’ vacation
two weeks in December/January for the Christmas period
one week in February for the carnival vacations
two weeks of vacation in March/April for the Easter period
one week in May/June for Pentecost.
The Luxembourg basic school.
The Luxembourg Basic School:
Luxembourg basic education is provided to children for the first 9 years of their schooling. School is compulsory for all children over the age of 4, as of September 1st of the current year.
Any child registered in a commune is automatically enrolled in the public school of the commune of residence. Schooling is a right in Luxembourg, regardless of gender, race, religion, or language.
Primary school education is divided into 4 basic cycles of school learning. From the age of 4, children must attend school until they are 12 years old. He then joined the public basic education system in Luxembourg. Parents can also choose to send their child to a private school of their choice, either international or Luxembourgish.
Primary Education in Luxembourg:
In Luxembourg, children are educated in Luxemburgish, French, or German, with education in the other 2 languages forming part of the curriculum too. Education is paid for and compulsory between age 4 and age 16 and there are no exceptions. Following an optional period of early childhood education, Luxemburgish children enroll at preschool at age 4 for 2 years. Six years of primary schooling follow, divided into 3 phases each of 2 years. Most schools provide lunch, and textbooks are supplied free of charge.
Preprimary education is compulsory at the age of four by the Grand Ducal Regulation of September 2, 1992. The Ministry of Education, which provides two-thirds of the financial expenses, controls preprimary schools.
The administration and maintenance of preprimary institutions is the responsibility of the municipality. No more than one percent of preprimary schools are private and those that are, are usually attached to a private primary school.
Two years of preprimary school is compulsory, but no formal teaching is given to the children. Preprimary schooling fosters the physical, intellectual, and social development of the children and prepares the children for entrance into primary school. For the academic years 1998-1999, there were 10,349 students enrolled in Luxembourg's public pre-primary schools. Of these, 62.5 percent were native Luxembourg citizens.
The rest were Portuguese (20.2 percent), Yugoslavian (3.8 percent), Italian (3 percent), French (2.9 percent), Belgian (2 percent), and German (1 percent), with the remaining 4.6 percent distributed among a variety of nationalities. There were 654 students enrolled in private pre-primary institutions from 1998-1999.
Cycle 1 Early Education and Preschool “Spillschoul:
Cycle 1 is designed for children ages 3 to 5. The schooling in “Precoce” is optional from 3 to 4 years old, then compulsory for the 2 preschool years “Spillschoul” from 4 to 5 years old.
A child can optionally enterearly education as early as age 3. Up to the age of 4, you can choose to have your child cared for or home-schooled. All children who have reached the age of 4 by September 1st must start school in the current year.
Cycle 1 of early education corresponds to the socialization of the child. It aims to develop his intellectual curiosity and cognitive knowledge. Exchanges are made in the Luxembourg language, regardless of the child’s mother tongue. Lëtzebuergësch is the lingua franca of all children who have attended the Luxembourg public school system. Children are introduced to the French language at this stage.
Cycles 2, 3 and 4 of the basic school:
From the age of 6, children join cycle 2 of the basic school for a period of 2 years. Cycle 2.1 and 2.2 correspond to the beginning of the basic school. It is for children from 6 to 7 years old.
In the continuity, cycles 3 and 4 are also declined over 2 years: cycle 3.1 and 3.2 for children aged 8 to 9 years old and cycle 4.1 and 4.2 for children aged 10 and 11 years old.
During the 6 years of elementary school, children will learn to read and write in German, the language of literacy and learning from cycle 2 onwards. They will also learn French.
The subjects taught are German, mathematics, science, drawing, singing, and music, … History-geography is taught from cycle 4. Each target aims to help children acquire different learning and skills that will allow them to continue in the next cycle.
At the end of the 6 years of primary elementary school, the children join secondary or high school.
Enrolment in the basic school:
When you register with your commune of residence, your child is automatically enrolled in the public school of the commune. As soon as your child reaches the mandatory school age, you will receive automatically receive an invitation for the next school year, in the primary cycle corresponding to your child’s age. Your child will then join the basic school where you live.
You may choose to send your child to a school outside your municipality of residence. To do so, you must send a request to the municipal administration of the school in question before May 1, preceding the new school year.
If you registered in your commune after March 1 or if you do not receive any mail by April 15 before the start of the school year, please contact the education department of your commune directly.
Language teaching in Luxembourg schools:
In the Luxembourg system, the teaching is based on the 3 official languages of the country: Lëtzebuergesch, German and French. Spillschoul” is traditionally based on spoken Lëtzebuergesch only. Very recently, it was decided to integrate French at this stage.
As soon as they enter cycle 2 of basic education, children begin to learn toread and write in German. They continue to learn the different subjects in German and reinforce their knowledge of the French language .
Lëtzebuergësch remains the main language of communication between students and teachers.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is education accessible for children in Luxembourg?
The government runs most schools in Luxembourg for free. School is mandatory between ages 4 to 16 years old. Nearly every school is a multilingual melting pot of French, German, Luxembourgish, and some English.
Does Luxembourg have a good education system?
The educational system in Luxembourg is one of the most successful in the world, and for a good reason. With well-paid teachers and multiple languages incorporated into the curriculum, there is a high standard for success.
How many primary schools are there in Luxembourg?
156 primary schools
basic education in the 156 primary schools spread over the 105 Luxembourg municipalities. Classical, general, European, international, and British secondary education, from the age of 12, offered in Luxembourg's 37 secondary schools.
What language is spoken in schools in Luxembourg?
The national language is Luxembourgish while French is the legislative language; French, German and Luxembourgish are the three administrative and judicial languages. The languages spoken by foreign residents, Portuguese and English in particular, are gaining in importance.
How long is a school day in Luxembourg?
A typical day at school has two sessions. The first starts at 8 a.m. and lasts until 11:30 a.m. for younger students and 12 p.m. for older students. During the morning session, there is typically a 10 a.m. break where students will bring a sandwich or light snack.
How much does school cost in Luxembourg?
School fees are approximately 10,700-13,700 Euros per year, depending on the age/stage of the child. Admissions process: A non-refundable application fee of 750 Euros must be made with the application.
What is the school year in Luxembourg?
Schools in Luxembourg start the school year in the middle of September and end in the middle of July of the following year. Schools across primary and general secondary education share the same holidays. There are 6 holiday breaks each year: Autumn (1 week.
Is Luxembourg expensive for students?
According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the monthly resources required correspond to at least 80% of the guaranteed minimum income in Luxembourg. A student in Luxembourg will therefore need a budget of 1.805,56 € (according to index of 01.10. 2021) to cover all of his or her needs.
Is it cheap to study in Luxembourg?
Student living costs in Luxembourg, While you will enjoy the high standard of living in Luxembourg, you should know it doesn't come cheap. As a student, you will spend between 700 and 1,500 EUR every month to cover your living costs. Luxembourg is part of the European Union, so the national currency is the euro (EUR).
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Luxembourg Primary or Elementry Education is an article that our team came out with recently after series of researches about the elementary system of education in the country.
The article talks about the basic education, what primary education means, the school rhythm, some frequently asked questions,
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