Upper Secondary School

We are planning to introduce the Gymnasiale Oberstufe (upper secondary education) next school year 2024/25, starting with Year 11 and then successively growing up to Year 13. With the decision to introduce the Gymnasiale Oberstufe, we have fulfilled the wish of many students and their parents. In recent years, graduates were reluctant to leave our school and found the change of school unpleasant; most families would have liked to stay.

In future, all students at our school shall have the opportunity to learn bilingually from Year 1 to the Abitur in Year 13 – depending on the required performance and motivation to enter the upper secondary school. The purpose of a Gemeinschaftsschule is joint learning up to the qualification that suits each student individually and corresponds to their performance and plans for the future. As a bilingual school with many international families, we want to offer the standard Berlin Abitur, supplemented by the Certificate of Bilingualism and optionally the Cambridge Certificate. With this degree and the certificates, our students shall be able to study at all universities worldwide where German or English is spoken as a course language. We would like to point out that the recognition of our upper secondary school is currently in the approval process.

In our opinion, the Abitur in 13 years – which is only offered at integrated secondary schools and Gemeinschaftsschulen in Berlin – offers a number of advantages over the Abitur in 12 years at Berlin’s grammar schools:

  • The additional time allows students to engage with the course content in a thorough, intensive and focused manner, enabling them to develop a deeper understanding and prepare for the requirements of the qualification phase in grades 12 and 13 in a calm and careful manner in grade 11. In the introductory phase in year 11, there will be preparatory courses for each advanced course and therefore also the opportunity to make adjustments to the choice of advanced courses if they are not suitable after all.
  • The additional year offers more time – also as part of our Work & Travel program and the Duke of Edinburgh Award – to think about your own career: “What will I do after my Abitur? Do I want to go to university, start vocational training or am I interested in a voluntary social year? Will I stay in Germany or will I be drawn out into the world?”.
  • Over a longer school period, young people have more opportunity to grow personally, to discover and deepen their interests, be it in academic subjects, but above all in extracurricular activities. This contributes significantly to the development and unfolding of individual talents, because school is not everything!
  • In addition, the 13 years of school reduce the pressure and stress on students and, with the approval of the school management, offer the opportunity to complete a stay abroad during the introduction to the upper secondary school in year 11. The exact modalities for re-entry into our school after the stay abroad depend on individual performance, work and social behavior and the duration of the stay abroad.
  • The intermediate school-leaving certificate (MSA) examinations in year 10 serve as preparation and good practice for the Abitur in order to get to know one’s own skills in dealing with examinations and increase the seriousness of the preparations.
  • Federal states in which all secondary schools (including grammar schools) offer the Abitur in 13 school years perform best in educational evaluations, such as Bavaria and Saxony.

In consultation with our students and parents, we are currently planning a tailor-made range of courses with a focus on bilingualism/languages and STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics).

Schülergruppe vor der Schule

Admission is subject to the condition that the entitlement to transfer to the gymnasiale Oberstufe is achieved, which is regulated in the Berlin School Act as well as in the regulations on secondary level I (Sek I-VO § 48) and on the gymnasiale Oberstufe (VO-GO §§ 4 -6) in the respective current version: Passing the examinations for the intermediate school leaving certificate (MSA) as well as a grade point average of at least 3.0 in year 10 (= MSA plus). If students transfer to the 11th grade from another German state or from abroad, parents submit applications to transfer to the upper Gymnasium level, which are forwarded via the school to the Senate Administration, where a decision is made.

We generally offer DaZ (German as a second language) and EAL (English as an Additional Language) to all lateral entrants in current year groups – however, for the gymnasiale Oberstufe, it must be ensured that the language requirements for successful learning in both German and English are met in accordance with the course selection. For the admission of external students, we will arrange appointments and/or trial days so that we can get a personal impression of the level of performance, work and social behavior and the language level German/English.

About the premises: Next to our school, we have built a new, modern building with 4 classrooms for students in secondary levels I and II on the neighboring property, our “Second House”. We have also developed new classrooms, course rooms and break rooms for secondary levels I and II on the first floor of the neighboring building at Berliner Straße 13. By the start of the 2025/26 school year, we will also be converting our building, which currently houses the Platanus Kindergarten at Benjamin-Vogelsdorff-Str. 1 in Berlin-Pankow, and expanding the existing building to include two additional large classrooms and a large multifunctional room that can also be used as a cafeteria. We are looking forward to our new campus – exclusively for upper secondary students – and to modern, energy-efficient premises for our upper secondary school, just a few minutes’ walk from our school’s main building.

We are a performance-oriented school that supports our secondary school students – just like in the first 6 years of primary school – in achieving the best possible results. Through our pedagogical focus – encouraging and challenging, differentiated teaching, team teaching and support teaching – we offer all students the right framework to learn in a pleasant learning atmosphere up to the appropriate school leaving certificate, the (extended) vocational training certificate (eBBR), the intermediate school leaving certificate (MSA) or in the future – after recognition by the Berlin Senate Administration – up to the Abitur.

If you have any questions about our concept or admission, please do not hesitate to contact us!