TechnologieRegion Karlsruhe TechnologieRegion Karlsruhe

The European School Karlsruhe

The European School Karlsruhe (ESK), situated in the Karlsruhe suburb of Waldstadt, is one of 14 European Schools to be found in the locations of EU institutions all over Europe. Originally founded in 1962 to provide education for the children of EU institution personnel, the ESK is an intergovernmental organisation. The European School Karlsruhe today also offers places to children whose parents do not work for a European institution. Nearly 900 pupils, from over 40 nations, are taught in almost all 24 official EU languages. A family, which does not belong to European Institutions, can send an application of enrolment for their children.

Like all European Schools the ESK aims to educate its pupils throughout the Kindergarten, Primary and Secondary levels in the three main language sections German, English and French. Multilingual, multicultural teaching by mother-tongue teachers is therefore guaranteed.


180 members of staff from 15 different countries of the European Union work at the ESK. The catchment area stretches from Mannheim and Heidelberg in the north down to Strasbourg in the south.


Also on the premises is the day-nursery Polyglott, run by the AWO, and open to children from 3 months old.


The internationally recognised European Baccalaureate, which is the final qualification achieved at the ESK, is based on a very high level of competence in both scientific and language based subjects and opens up worldwide possibilities for further studies.

At a glance

  • Three staged setup: Kindergarten – primary school – secondary school
  • All-day school (lessons Monday-Thursday 8.05 a.m. – 3.30 p.m., Fridays 8.05 a.m. – 12.15 p.m.)
  • Multilingual education in all languages spoken in the EU
  • Lessons taught by teachers who are native speakers
  • Europe being lived through the teaching of the values of tolerance, respect and democracy
  • Intercultural learning and multicultural everyday life
  • Exceptional imparting of knowledge in lingual, mathematical-scientific and musical areas
  • Worldwide possibilities for study through an internationally acknowledged European Baccalaureate
  • The ESK offers many services, such as transport of the pupils, afternoon activities and even lunch in its own canteen.
  • To arrange an appointment for more information you are welcome to send an email to or call 0721 6800972.

The educational concept

      The European School Karlsruhe offers high quality education from Nursery through Primary (from 6-11 years old) to Secondary (from 11 to 18 years old) culminating with the European Baccalaureate. The AWO- Kita Polyglott, for children from 3 months to 3.5 years, is also located in close proximity to the school. The aim of the European School Karlsruhe, like the other European schools, is to offer tuition to children in the kindergarten, primary and secondary in the main 3 language sections: German, English and French. A multilingual and multicultural education with native speaker teachers is therefore ensured. The European Baccalaureate, internally recognised, is a high level diploma in languages and sciences which allows students to enrol in universities worldwide.


European values such as openness, tolerance and democracy are conveyed to the students at the ESK.  Activities, such as the EU-wide Comenius project show the special international character of the ESK. And, although the participating schools are thousands of kilometres apart, the exchange between them is intensively cultivated and maintained: In this modern age we communicate through the means of European-wide eTwinning, the webpage, e-mails, videoconferences and of course through visiting each other. For the ESK students it is nothing unusual to visit other countries, for example as part of the „Model United Nations“(MUN), which give an understanding of the workings of the United Nations.

European spirit

The ESK has sent 2643 graduates out into the world since the first Baccalaureate exams, for 3 young people in 1968, up until 2015. “The ESK is a particularly valuable jewel for Karlsruhe. The pupils experience Europe here and consequently we encounter Europe right here in Karlsruhe,” said Dr. Frank Mentrup at the anniversary celebration in 2013. Kari Kivinen, from Finland, General Secretary of all 14 European Schools, emphasizes


in this context: the school has opened itself up to the business world through many partnerships with companies and there is an excellent cooperation with the state government and the town of Karlsruhe. “The ESK is a location factor for the whole of the technology region” says the Director, Mr Daniel Gassner.

European Dialogue Centre (EDC)

European Dialogue Silver Award

The European Dialogue Centre (EDC) was built in the grounds of the ESK in 2014 and is a meeting point for local and international players. Former ESK-director Tom Høyem founded the project, promoted by the town of Karlsruhe and the parliament of Baden-Württemberg. The EDC should strengthen the connection between Karlsruhe international and Karlsruhe local- as also the „European Dialogue Silver Award“, that is awarded once a year in the European Dialogue Center.


Focusing on the strong international potential of Karlsruhe, a selected jury chooses a person, an



institution or a company, that promotes and supports the dialogue between the local and international Karlsruhe in a special way. Tom Høyem founded the award with many regionally well-known jury members in 2013. Wilhelm Bühler, co-founder of Stadt-Wiki received the first European Dialogue Silver Award in 2013.

„Open Day“

African Food at the „Open Day"

From everyday school-life to large public events such as the annual Open Day: The multicultural educational institution in the Karlsruhe suburb of Waldstadt is truly alive. Every March the school welcomes between 1,000 and 2,000 international visitors to its Open Day. This gives them the opportunity to witness for themselves European education in a cosmopolitan and familial atmosphere for children of all ages: From nursery through Kindergarten, to the primary and secondary school. All those interested in pedagogical and extracurricular care for their children can come and inform themselves on this day.


Around 200 partner-contracts with companies and institutions within the “Technology Region” Karlsruhe make the European School an important location factor for the strong development in research and the economy in the area. In intensive cooperation with the Chamber of industry and commerce (IHK) the ESK is committed to the educational initiative „Wirtschaft macht Schule“, which focuses on the shortage of employees in certain sectors.

A long close relationship, of course, also exists with the mother organisation, the Institute for Transurane (ITU).