Of the almost 1600 schools in Bavaria over 1300 are operated by privately-run institutions. One of the most recent additions to this list is the Aktive projekt-Schule (active project school) in Stephanskirchen – ‘a Protestant school for pupils from years five to ten that is fun and has meaning’. A spokesperson from the school says, ‘five years ago we started working on a concept for an all-day school open to all. It opened in autumn 2017. Since then 25 pupils have been learning together in a mixed-age group spanning years five to eight’.
The Aktive projekt-Schule differs from traditional teaching concepts in many aspects. Lessons do not start until 8:30 a.m. and pupils are not awarded marks. But the central difference is the focus on project work. The pupils decide between themselves which topics they will study in the coming weeks; recently they have studied subjects such as ‘the sub-aquatic world’ and ‘play’. The teachers create project plans based on the chosen subject, which conform to the Bavarian curricula. At the end of each project the parents are invited to the school and the pupils are given the opportunity to independently present their results.
In 2019 the first pupils completed their school leaving certificates.
The concept appears to appeal to parents: all places at the school are taken until autumn 2019.
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