Skip to content

Welcome to the Sixth Form (SEK II)

The SEK II leads to the German International Abitur (DIA). In addition, our students have the option to take the International Baccalaureate (IB) or the Fachoberschulreife (FOS, a qualification with a more vocational focus) with us. These highly respected qualifications empower our graduates to access German, British and other European and international universities and training programmes.

However, our Sixth Form offers more than just a focussed preparation for the final exams. We encourage young people to take responsibility for their own actions, be open to diversity and invite them to critical reflection.

Would you like to find out more?

Pedagogical Concept

The concept of our sixth form is based on a holistic understanding of learning. We promote independent learning, autonomous behaviour and commitment to the school community and beyond. We focus on the individuality of our students, supporting and challenging them according to their needs and interests.

In order to shape critical and creative members of society, the sixth form is dedicated to in-depth scientific questions and promotes an enquiring attitude. We impart a sound general education and strengthen creativity in order to enable young people to view the world from different perspectives.

The option of taking the IB or individual IB courses allows students to develop a special profile. The diversity of learners and teachers as well as close networking with other schools prepare students for global challenges. An outstanding linguistic and cultural education qualifies graduates for international academic careers.

As a German school abroad in the United Kingdom, we build bridges through various activities and intensive exchanges, promote the German and English language of education and accompany students on their way to study and work in German and English-speaking countries and beyond.

Admission criteria

SEK I pupils who have completed year 10 and have a promotion certificate from a SEK I school can be admitted to year 11.

Pupils with a Realschulabschluss (middle school leaver qualification) can receive authorisation to enter the qualification phase after a successful assessment at the end of year 10. There must be a certificate from the previous school stating that there is anaptitude to attend the Sixth Form. As a rule, this can be assumed if an average grade of 2.5 has been achieved in the subjects German, foreign languages, maths and a natural science. However, year 10 must first be repeated at Secondary level.

Pupils with another qualification that has been recognised by the German Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs (KMK) as sufficient for attending a Sixth Form can be admitted to year 11.

If pupils transfer from schools with a thirteen year system (G9), a decision will be made after a three-month trial period as to whether they can remain in the year group in question or whether they will be admitted to the next lower year group.

Admission to year 12 is generally not possible. All exceptions require an application to the KMK and will decided upon in Germany.

Structure of the Sixth Form

The Sixth Form follows the guidelines of the Standing Conference of the Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs of the Länder in the Federal Republic of Germany (KMK) and is based on recommendations for the work in this school section as well as on the agreements on standardised examination requirements. The basis for this are the "Regulations for Obtaining the General Higher Education Entrance Qualification at German Schools Abroad" and the "Guidelines for the Regulations for Obtaining the General German Higher Education Entrance Qualification at German Schools Abroad".

Year 10 serves as an introductory phase and concludes the lower secondary level. Promotion to the qualification phase, the Sixth Form, (years 11 and 12) takes place after the introductory phase in accordance with the promotion regulations.

In the qualification phase, students must provide evidence of their performance for the German International Abitur examination. The examination itself takes place in the second half of year 12 and consists of written and oral examinations.

In the entire Sixth form lessons are organised in class and course groups. Students take subjects according to their areas of specialisation, with geography being taught bilingually from Year 11 onwards.

Year 10 as introduction to the Sixth Form

The scope of teaching in year 10 is at least 32 compulsory lessons per week. Of these, the following are compulsory for all pupils:

German, English, a second foreign language (French or Latin or Spanish), maths, history, geography, politics and sport. In the compulsory elective area, pupils can choose between ethics (in German or English) and religion, as well as art and music

Pupils choose two or three subjects from the natural sciences of physics, chemistry and biology, depending on whether they would prefer to focus on languages or natural sciences in the qualification phase.

The binding choice of subjects takes place in the second half of year 9. A change of subject is only possible in justified exceptional cases. Separate agreements may apply for school careers with a different foreign language sequence.

Transfer to the qualification phase

At the end of year 10, the conference of subject teachers decides on promotion to the qualification phase. The promotion decision is based on the promotion regulations for lower secondary level.

Students who are not promoted to the qualification phase can repeat year 10. However, anyone who is not promoted for the second time or has previously repeated two years of lower secondary level must leave the Deutsche Schule London. It is then no longer possible to transfer to the upper secondary level of a German school in Germany or another German school abroad.

Realschule (middle school leavers certificate) students who receive permission to enter the upper Gymnasium level at the end of year 10 must repeat year 10 at the Gymnasium level.

Qualification phase

In the four semesters of the qualification phase, students are prepared for the Abitur examinations.

The results of the qualification phase are included in the Abitur certificate. The performance in all qualification subjects in each half-year is assessed with a number of points from 0 to 15. Semi-annual reports are issued for the four semesters in the qualification phase; the grades are set independently of each other.

In years 11 and 12 , all students have at least 35 and 36 lessons per week. Out of these, the following are compulsory for all pupils:
German, English, maths, history and sport.
In the compulsory elective area, students choose between ethics and religion as well as art and music. In addition, one of the following subject combinations must be taken:

  • an additional foreign language (French or Spanish) and two natural sciences (physics, chemistry or biology) or

  • three natural sciences (physics, chemistry and biology).

In principle, no new or additional subjects may be chosen in Year 11. This must be taken into account when choosing subjects before the start of year 10.


Performance assessment and evaluation in year 10 is based on the assessment regulations for lower secondary level. Performance assessment in the qualification phase (grades 11 and 12) is based on the requirements of the KMK.

Written examinations are written in all subjects (with the exception of sport), for which the following framework applies:

  • In terms of form and content, the requirements are to be successively adapted to the performance expectations in the Abitur examination, both in terms of content, correction as well as assessment and grading.

  • In all subjects (with the exception of sport), at least one written examination is written in each of the first three semesters, and two written examinations per semester in the subjects with an increased level of difficulty German, English and maths. In the term of the Abitur examination, one written examination is written in all subjects. The duration of the exams depends on subject-specific requirements. The minimum duration is 90 minutes, the maximum duration may not exceed the duration of the written Abitur examination.

  • During the first two terms of the qualification phase, one written examination per subject can be replaced by another, individually measurable performance record. Instead of a written examination in year 11 in the modern foreign languages English, French and Spanish, the examination in the competence areas of speaking or listening comprehension or listening-viewing comprehension is mandatory.

  • In the first semester of the final year, one of the written examinations in each subject is written under examination conditions.

  • The grades shown in the half-year reports are calculated in equal parts from the results of the written examinations written in the half-year and the other work done in class.

From year 11 onwards, the traditional grading system will be replaced by a points system (for written and oral performance and in school reports), which allows for greater differentiation.

Pupils who leave the qualification phase before completing the Abitur examinations receive a leaving certificate and, on request, a certificate stating the content of the subjects attended in the qualification phase.

Which language is spoken in lessons?

Our aim is for our students to be proficient in both German and English at an academic level and to use specialised vocabulary appropriately. The language of instruction is mainly German. Students can choose to take German or English lessons in some subjects. Participation in English-language lessons at native language level is certified.


Uta von Andrian, our Admissions Coordinator, will be happy to answer your questions or to direct you to the corresponding person.

Uta von Andrian

Admissions Coordinator