Compulsory education is not negotiable. In order to protect it, the Berlin School Act and the AV School Attendance Obligation bind the teachers of your child to certain legal measures. In the following we summarize the most important information for you:
Berlin School Act:
§44 Responsibility for compliance with compulsory schooling
“The legal guardians shall be responsible for the regular participation of school-aged pupils in lessons and other compulsory events at the school. You are obliged to register and deregister school-aged pupils with the school.“
The most important steps
On the first day of absence from school, the parent or guardian informs the school by telephone (between 7 a.m. and 7.30 a.m.) that their child will not come to school. If you cannot reach anyone by phone, please email email@example.com and your child's class email address. If possible, please also indicate how long your child will be missing. The apology must also be made in writing on the third day of absence at the latest. When returning to school, the pupil must submit a declaration stating the duration of his/her absence and the reason for it (e.g. illness) (cf. AV compulsory school attendance). You are welcome to use the form "Declaration of absence" (see below).
Example: Your child is absent for the first time on Thursday. On Thursday, between 7 am and 7.30 am, call the school to report the absence of the child. The apology must be made in writing by Monday at the latest. If your child is absent for the first time on Monday, present a written apology by Wednesday at the latest.
- Call to the secretariate between 7 and 7:30 on the first day of absence OR ODER
- E-mail to secretariate and class e-mail
- Submission of a formal declaration of absence on the third day of absence (see form below).
If the apology is not made within the specified periods, the absence shall be noted as unexcused.
If a pupil fails to attend classes without an excuse, the school must contact his or her legal guardian on the first day of absence without an excuse.
If a pupil is absent from class for five days without an excuse, the school must report this to the education authority. The proceedings are repeated after a further five unexcused days of absence in each half-year.
Note on excuse reasons
There must be an important reason for absenteeism and permission must be obtained in advance. For example, a visit to the doctor during class time is generally not permitted unless it can be demonstrated that the appointment cannot be postponed or that the illness is serious and requires immediate treatment. A booked holiday trip is not a reason for leave.