VIENNA BILINGUAL SCHOOLING – VBSEUROPABÜRO

 

Enrolment Procedure for the School Year 2018/19

  • The enrolment and the orientation talks take place in the first week of the enrolment period 15th - 18th January 2018 at the VBS primary school.
  • Please arrange an appointment with the head teacher in advance - usually on the OPEN DAY!
  • Notice of eligibility for the VBS programme will be sent via e-mail (or by post if e-mail is not possible) on the 19th of January 2018.
  • If your child is not eligible for the VBS programme you have the possibility to enrol your child in another class or at another school in the second week of the enrolment period from the 22nd - 26th January 2018. Further details of other projects with a modern language emphasis offered by the Vienna Board of Education can be found here: www.wien.gv.at/bildung/stadtschulrat/pdf/schule-in-wien.pdf.
  • School places are allocated by the responsible school inspectorate

 

Objectives 

For many years the Vienna Board of Education has offered a spectrum of various modern language initiatives. One of these being the pilot project: VIENNA BILINGUAL SCHOOLING – VBS.

In order to meet the needs of the ever-increasing number of Viennese pupils that have an outstanding command of both English as well as German language skills, the VBS pilot project was developed. Thus, the aim of the VBS schools is to implement German, as well as English, as the languages of instruction from the first day of school.

The pilot project VBS begins with primary school and continues through both lower and upper secondary schools. A further opportunity to enter a VBS school occurs again after a successful orientation talk, at the transfer from primary to lower secondary and into upper secondary school.

In primary school, the main object of this pilot project is to impart a basic general education, according to the Austrian curriculum, in the first language of the child (German or English). As well as that, basic skills are acquired in the respective second language (German or English).

Implementation

The acquisition of basic cultural techniques (especially German reading and writing or English reading and writing) takes place in the first or dominant language of the child (German or English).

Acquisition of literacy skills in the second language begins from Year 1 on an individual basis.

VBS classes are divided into two language groups for the acquisition of literacy skills (German reading and writing or English reading and writing) in the first or dominant language, as well as in German or English as a second language lessons. The remaining lessons are devoted to bilingual teaching.

Enrolment Procedure

  1. The interest of parents/guardians and pupils in a bilingual school far outweighs the actual number of school places available. It is therefore inevitable that not all wishes can be fulfilled.
  2. Due to the fact that the number of school places do not meet the high demand, it is necessary to have a special enrolment procedure for the VBS schools, which involves an orientation talk with the child.
  3. Understandably,onlyabriefimpressionofthechildcanbewonduringthecourse of this orientation talk. However, this factor is taken into consideration by the experienced team of experts, as well as by the local VBS-commission. The orientation talk was developed, in co-operation with school psychologists of the Vienna Board of Education and external experts from the University of Graz, and incorporates the following aspects:

    • social skills and emotional competence
    • communicative strategies (flexibility within the languages)
    • communication skills in English and German

  4. The localised VBS commission (made up of the head teacher, class and native speaker teachers and supervisory personnel) decides upon the eligibility of the child after the orientation talk has taken place. The results are then passed onto parents/guardians electronically (or by post). School place allocation is the exclusive responsibility of the school inspectorate, after statutory guidelines (siblings, location of residence) have been taken into account. Determination of school maturity is the sole responsibility of the head teacher.
  5. In order to ensure the continued existence and assurance of quality within the VBS pilot project, it is of utmost importance that there is a balance of dominant English speaking and dominant German speaking pupils in every class. Only then can a successful bilingual education take place.

    Therefore the following factors are considered at the enrolment:
    • eligibility (orientation talk)
    • statutory guidelines (siblings, residential district, maximum number of pupils per class)
    • best possible balance of children in the class with either German or English as a first language
    • enough eligible children to fill a class