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Additional support classes for German

Objective

The Federal Ministry uses multiple initiatives to address the topic of linguistic education as a general educational concern. These include measures to promote German as the academic language, to promote reading and foreign language learning, measures addressing mother-tongue teaching and minority education.

Education is always linguistic education. Good language skills are key to increased educational justice in the school system and to successful exploitation of existing potential. Promotion of German as the teaching language therefore makes a significant contribution to equal opportunity when children start school. This is why securing basic reading skills is particularly important for successful acquisition of knowledge.

Furthermore, linguistic education also includes linguistic diversity in general, in other words first, second, native and foreign languages, as well as minority languages for which, on the basis of constitutional provisions, Austria offers bilingual minority education.

Measures

German as the academic language

Acquisition or knowledge of German as the language of teaching and education forms the basis for participation in all of the educational processes and therefore is an essential requirement for successful schooling, subsequent integration into the employment market and participation in the political, economic, cultural and social life of Austria.

Further information (in German only)

Current measures

Literacy promotion

The Federal Ministry sees reading as a basic skill which facilitates access to knowledge and participation in shaping our world. The cultural technique of reading is therefore embedded in all types of schools, in all age groups and in all teaching subjects, as well as in extracurricular activities.

Further information: Literacy promotion (in German only)

Foreign language learning

More so than ever before, linguistic competence expands the prospects of personal continuing education and professional development in a unified Europe and globalised world. The importance of language learning and promotion of existing multilingualism is being taken into account through attention to language learning in primary school and a wide range of language learning opportunities at secondary level.

Further information: Foreign language competence and multilingualism (in German only)

Multilingualism and mother-tongue teaching

In the 2017/18 academic year, more than 26% of all pupils in Austria used another language, in addition to German, in their daily lives. It is a school’s duty to help all children and young people develop as much as possible, taking into consideration their differing (linguistic) requirements. This is why numerous Austrian schools offer mother-tongue teaching in more than 26 languages.

Further information: Mother-tongue teaching (in German only)

Minority education

Austria is enriched in many respects by the ethnic groups living here and there is a centuries-old tradition of coexistence in multilingual areas. The education system plays a leading role in continuous positive development. On the basis of the Minority Schooling Act (Minderheitenschulgesetz), bilingual schools in Carinthia use Slovenian and schools in Burgenland use (Burgenland) Croatian and Hungarian as the teaching languages to almost the same extent as German.

Further information: Minority education (in German only)

Contact

Department head Muriel Warga-Fallenböck

Department I/3 - Language Education, Diversity and Minority Education

T +43 1 53120 4722

sprachlichebildung@bmbwf.gv.at