A brief presentation

The European Schools offer special curriculae for pupils from all European countries. The teachers also come from all the countries. Especially in language teaching it is a firm rule that the teachers are natives of the countries of the languages concerned. And at the end the schools offer the European Baccalaureat, which gives access to all universities all over Europe.

The European Schools were started in Luxembourg in 1952. Today there are 14 European Schools in TYPE 1.   School no. 15 is planned to start in Brussels, which already has 4 European schools.

The European Schools are based on an intergovernmental agreement between the 28 EU member states, the European Patent Office in Munich and the European Commission.

The Board of Governors has representatives from all member states, the Patent Office, the Commission, the organisation of parents and a representative from the staff.

The schools are geographically situated, where the EU institutions are based. The staff of these institutions is allowed to send their children to these schools for free.

The European Schools may also make contracts with private companies, institutions and families. This is not the case, though, for the schools in Brussels, Luxembourg, Munich and Frankfurt.

The schools with these contracts are called TYPE 2 schools.  The pupils pay the real costs per pupil. In the school in Karlsruhe this is about 13.000 € per pupil a year.

If the schools have further capacity (as is at present the case in Bergen, Mol, Varese, Culham and Karlsruhe) they may as TYPE 3 schools take in other pupils. They pay about half of the costs paid by the pupils in TYPE 2 schools.


Some years ago the Board of Governors decided to allow so-called  TYPE 2 – associated schools. They are schools in places with EU institutions, but where the staff is not big enough to make a full TYPE 1 school. The EU pays fully for the children of the EU staff, while the other pupils have to pay for themselves or to be paid for by the local government.  Such European Schools exist today in Strasbourg, Helsinki, Heraklion, Parma, Manosque, Dublin and from September 2014 in Copenhagen.

The Board of Governors has also agreed to the possibility for TYPE 3 – associated schools. They are schools, which follow the curriculae of the European Schools, are being inspected by EU inspectors and take part in joint meetings. The Board of Governors and the EU do not pay anything for or to these schools. They have to be financed in other ways. Until now just one such Category 3 school exists. It is in Bad Vilbel (near Frankfurt a.M.). It is a total success.  There are also strong efforts to start similar TYPE 3 schools in Mannheim and in Offenburg.

The concept of these schools has to be agreed by the Board of Governors, and the European School system will not accept any expenses from them. The application to the Board has to be sent by the government of the country concerned.

Until now no European School is a boarding school. But the European School in Karlsruhe is planning to have one soon. It will probably also have pupils from China and India.


(presentation based on information from Mr. Tom Høyem, headmaster, European School in Karlsruhe).


Niels Jørgen Thøgersen

President of ETTW