Schools and childcare

Children are pure vitality. Thanks to its nature and infrastructure, Bavaria provides an optimal environment for a great childhood. In Bavaria, kids can still be kids.

For working parents, it especially important to have a healthy balance between family and work. The Bavarian state government provides support for doing so with numerous programmes.

Expansion to childcare

One focal point of Bavarian family policy is an expansion to childcare facilities. At the beginning of the 2013/14 day nursery year, there were more than 100,000 childcare spots available for children under three - which is about three times more than six years ago.

Day nursery, preschool and nanny - the choice is yours

There are various sponsors for childcare facilities. They may be community sponsors, like the local government or a church, or initiatives from companies and other entities in the private sector. Pedagogical concepts also vary.

The best thing to do is to review multiple childcare options on-site, and then to decide which concept and which facility appeal to you and your child the most.

The most important variables in childcare in Bavaria are:

  • Day nurseries (Kinderkrippen) – Day care facilities with a programme largely oriented toward children in the first three years of life.
  • Preschools (Kindergärten) – Day care facilities with a programme largely oriented toward children from the third year of life to the time they enter school; however, they may also be open for children of other age groups.
  • Before- and after-school care (Horte) – Day care facilities with a programme largely oriented toward school children not attending an all-day school.
  • Houses for children (Häuser für Kinder) – Day care facilities for children of various age groups.
  • Child day care (Kindertagespflege) – Day care provided by a nanny - can be female or male.

Further information

Bavarian Ministry of Work and Social Order, Family and Women's Affairs
Detailed information on the topic of family and children in Bavaria, as well as on services for families in Bavaria (website in German)
Homepage of the Federal Ministry for Family, Seniors, Women's Affairs and Youth
Information on the services and measures on the national level (website in German)

Financial support

  • German national law lays out tax relief for families. This includes allowances for children and child benefits, which are paid out monthly for each child by the Family Benefits Offices (Familienkassen) of the Federal Employment Agency (Bendesagentur für Arbeit), as well as the possibility of applying childcare costs as tax deductions.
  • Parent subsidies and parental leave are governed by the German Act on Parental Subsidies and Parental Leave (Bundeselterngeld- und Elternzeitgesetz, BEEG).
    Parental subsidies substitute a portion of a parent's most recent income, making possible for mothers and fathers to take time off from their jobs to focus on caring for their child.
    When taking parental leave, mothers and fathers can dedicate their time to their child, while also ensuring that they can return to their profession following the break while on parental leave. Parental leave protects against dismissal for up to three years, which means an employer may not terminate employment in normal cases. You can find further information here (websites in German):
    www.stmas.bayern.de/familie/leistungen/eltern.php
    www.stmas.bayern.de/familie/leistungen/elternzeit.php
  • Bavaria is one of the four German states to provide funding for child subsidies. This supplemental family benefit can also be used by non-EU/EEC citizens under certain circumstances. You'll find further information here (website in German):
    www.stmas.bayern.de/familie/leistungen/bayern.php.
  • As of 1 September 2012, Bavaria will be providing parents with a contribution subsidy in the final year of preschool.
  • Parents of a child born after 1 August 2012 who do not claim a place for that child in a government-subsidised child-care facility (day-care centre or nursery) are eligible for child-care allowance. Subject to certain exceptions, this is as a general rule paid for children from 14 months of age up to 36 months of age. As of 1 August 2013, it will initially amount to € 100 per month and then from 1 August 2014 to € 150 per month for each child. The body responsible for the child-care allowance in Bavaria is the Zentrum Bayern Familie und Soziales (ZBFS). If you have any questions about child-care allowance, please contact the central ZBFS "Child-Care Service Hotline” by calling: +49 (0)931/32090929.