Monday, 26 October 2009

Kann Or Muß Kind?

Those of you with small children may heard others parents asking whether a child is a "Kann or Muß-Kind"?
I hadn't heard of the term a while ago: here's what (I understand) it means.
From pinksherbet on Flickr
In Germany kids start school at the age of six which, coming from the UK always strikes me as quite old. Like everything in Germany all the administration is strict and you have to register your child with the school a year in advance, and here is where the "kann" and "muß" come into it.
  • If you child's fifth birthday is before August (in the previous school year), then your child is a "Muß-Kind". Meaning they will be required to be registered for school starting the following year.
  • If the child is five after August (up until a certain date: I'll try and find out when), then they would be concidered a "Kan-Kind". 
Kan-Kinder don't have to go to school in the following year. It is best to liase with the kindergarten and discuss what is most apporpriate for the child in question. A Kann-Kind could also be rejected by the school as "unripe" following a competence test to evaluate if they'll fit in: so you can't push your Kann-Kind into school if the school do not agree with your evaluation of the childs development.
Muß-Kinder have to be registered to start school in the following August.

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