‘Ersatzschulstatus’ and Bilingual Classes
At our Secondary School, we offer two separate programmes:
- ‘genehmigte bilinguale Ersatzschule’ (state-recognised bilingual private school): Bilingual English-German programme based on a blend of the local Berlin curriculum framework (Berliner Rahmenlehrplan) blended with an international curriculum that incorporates an inquiry based pedagogy and more traditional approaches; Ethics, History, WAT (lit. Economics-Work-Technology) and partly P.E. as well as Mathematics lessons take place in German (approx. 50% of lessons); all remaining lessons are taught through the medium of English.
- ‘internationale Ergänzungsschule’ (private international school): Monolingual English-only programme based upon the framework of the International Baccalaureate (IB) and taught through the medium of English, except for the mandatory German lessons.
In August 2016, the BBS’s Secondary School was granted the status of a ‚genehmigte Ersatzschule‘ from the Berlin Senat. Secondary students attending the Ersatzschule follow the local Berlin curriculum framework (Berliner Rahmenlehrplan) blended with an international curriculum that incorporates an inquiry based pedagogy and more traditional approaches. This means that approx. 50% of the education we provide is taught in German. Currently, this affects Years 7-10.
We are gradually phasing in bilingual instruction for all our classes from Year 2 up to the end of Year 11. At Secondary School, we began in 2016-17 with Year 8. With every school year, bilingual teaching will increase by one year group until the school year 2020-21, when the bilingual programme will be available for all our students in all year groups.
Secondary students attending the Ersatzschule receive History and Ethics as well as two out of a total of six Mathematics lesson per week in German. Our P.E lessons are taught bilingually through the medium of both English and German. At Secondary School, all students, irrespective of their programme, receive report cards; students attending the Ersatzschule (bilingual programme), additionally, receive German grade cards including German numerical grades.
Beginning in 2018-19, Year 10 students are prepared for their German MSA (Mittlerer Schulabschluss; i.e. German intermediate school-leaving qualification) and as well as their IGCSE examinations. Students in the Ersatzschule will sit both the MSA and IGCSE exams in Year 11 at around the same time.
At BBS, we do not offer the Abitur as a school-leaving qualification, but only the International Baccalaureate. Please see https://berlinbritishschool.de/de/ibdp/ for further information on the IB Diploma Programme.