Access to state education

Here are the formalities you must complete if you want your children to have access to schools maintained with public funds, in other words, state schools and subsidised private schools.

Consult the procedure for access to a private school (not subsidised) with the centre itself.

For access to a school maintained with public funds you must normally first have to pre-register and then officially enrol. However, if you arrive in Barcelona with your child when the school year has already started or the enrolment period is over, you can complete the formality for schooling for newly arrived students.

The city of Barcelona has escoles bressol or public kindergartens that offer non-compulsory pre-school education for children aged 4 months to 3 years.

Compulsory education covers from 6 to 16 years but it is common for boys and girls to start school at the age of 3, accessing pre-primary (I3, I4 and I5). Then follows primary (year one to six) and compulsory secondary education (ESO) (year one to four).

The baccalaureate is not compulsory and is normally taken by students between the ages of 16 and 18, although it is open to people of any age.

Another option after compulsory education is vocational education and training (VET) programmes that prepare students to practise various professions and provide the training needed to acquire the specific professional skills and knowledge for each sector of the economy. Intermediate and advanced courses are available.