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/how to enroll a child in kindergarten in spain? current rules and requirements for enrolling a child in a spanish kindergarten

How to enroll a child in kindergarten in Spain? Current rules and requirements for enrolling a child in a Spanish kindergarten

Moving foreigners to Spain for permanent residence is always an exciting and intense process that is full of many surprises. You need to take care of important things, including paperwork, finding suitable accommodation and much more. And for foreigners with young children, one of the most important questions will be «where and how to enroll the child in kindergarten»?

To find a kindergarten in Spain and enroll your child there will not be a headache for you, we have prepared a lot of useful information for you. In this article you will learn everything you need to know about Spanish kindergartens and the process of enrolling a child in kindergarten in 2024.


Key information about kindergartens in Spain

It is clear that in Spain, as in any other civilized country, there are institutions for pre-school children. Spaniards call such places «guardería» and «escuela infantiles». An important point - kindergartens in Spain are designed for children from 0 to 3 years old. Some parents enroll their children in kindergarten immediately after birth, and sometimes book places even before the child is born. This shows that the kindergartens are very busy. There are several other types of daycare centers in Spain. Here are the most popular ones:

Casas De Niños. These are the same kindergartens as the «guardería». The main difference is the opening hours - children attend them on a reduced schedule. They are usually open until lunchtime.

Centros De Educación Infantil. This is already an analog of kindergartens that operate in Ukraine, Russia, Belarus and other countries. Such kindergartens can be attended by children from 0 to 6 years old.

Centros De Atencion. These kindergartens work for special children with certain disabilities. There are all facilities for disabled people and the staff are specially trained to work with special children.

Colegios Públicos de Educación Infantil y Primaria. Such institutions combine kindergartens and elementary schools. Parents can enroll here children from 3 to 12 years old, who will receive an educational base. They also have various hobby groups.


What is the difference between regular kindergartens and Montessori kindergartens?

Montessori kindergartens exist not only in Spain, but also in other countries. They work according to the methodology of the famous pedagogue Maria Montessori. The peculiarity is that all conditions for safe and effective development of children are created here.

In Montessori kindergartens there is no strict schedule and timetable. Here, on the contrary, children can decide for themselves what to do during the day. The staff of such institutions undergo special training and qualifications to work with children. They use special teaching materials and methods.


Is it necessary to pay for kindergarten attendance in Spain?

There are two types of daycare centers in Spain: private and public. If you think that public kindergartens are free, they are not. Even in public kindergartens, there is a fee for enrollment. It all depends on the type of daycare center.

  • Guardería. These are the most common and affordable kindergartens. A month of attendance at such an institution will cost parents 200-300 euros.

  • Centros De Educación Infantil. The price of attending such kindergartens will cost parents around 400 euros.

  • Centros De Atencion. Since these are daycare centers for special children, they operate on a free basis.

  • Colegios Públicos de Educación Infantil y Primaria. If your child is between the ages of 3 and 6, the daycare center is free of charge. But for older children you will have to pay about 500 euros a month (depending on the program and clubs).

A month of attendance at a private kindergarten in Spain costs an average of 500-600 euros per month. There is practically no difference between private and public kindergartens here, as the state takes care of the younger generation.


The process of enrolling children in a Spanish kindergarten

Almost all public services and institutions are digitalized today. Some day care centers have their own websites, social media accounts and groups. First, you need to collect a list of day care centers in your city and consider them in detail. It is recommended to go to each of the options and personally see all the pros and cons. You can also check what people write on the Internet about this or that kindergarten. For example, at this link you can see all the daycare centers that operate in Madrid.

Once you have decided on a suitable option - you need to go there with your child. Contact the administration of the kindergarten and find out if they have free places. Do not forget to find out everything you need to know about payment.

In order to enroll your child in a Spanish kindergarten, you will need to prepare some documents. The exact list of documents should be obtained from the administration of the kindergarten, as the list of documents may vary slightly. Basically, you will need: the child's birth certificate; a residence permit; the parents' passports; and a photograph of the child.


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