Family Life in Strasbourg
If your family, especially your children, accompanies you to Strasbourg during your stay, certain procedures must be completed, especially for enrolling children aged over three and under 16 in school. As a foreign resident staying regularly in France, you may also be eligible for social assistance to help cover the expenses related to your children.
In France, school is compulsory and free for all children aged 3 to 16 years old.
The school year lasts for 10 months, from September to early July. It is divided into 4 major vacation periods spread throughout the year according to 3 zones (A, B, and C), with Strasbourg falling under zone B. It is advisable to start the registration process as early as possible. Mid-year enrollments are possible, according to available spaces.
You must already be in Strasbourg and have proof of residence to enroll your children in school.
The municipality (mairie) of the family's residence provides parents with information about the school to which the student belongs and handles their registration.
Registrations in Strasbourg schools can be done online or by appointment at the neighborhood town hall, typically starting in April. This also applies to registration for the cafeteria and other extracurricular services (childcare, etc.).
Located in the heart of Europe, Strasbourg offers rich opportunities for international families relocating due to professional mobility.
Many institutions in Strasbourg offer international sections, which facilitate the reception and integration of students of all nationalities into the French education system by providing bilingual and bicultural education. These international sections are available at all levels of the school curriculum: preschool and elementary school, middle school, and high school.
If you reside with your family in France, regardless of your nationality, you may be eligible for family benefits (family allowances, young child benefit, etc.), subject to income conditions.
The Family Allowance Fund (Caisse d'allocations familiales or CAF) manages the assistance programmes based on your situation, the number of children, and the type of childcare. The same organisation also manages housing assistance.
To qualify for these benefits, you must hold one of the following residence permits:
- Long-stay visa with residence permit (VLS-TS)
- Resident card or residence permit
- Receipt for a residence permit renewal application
- Temporary residence permit for more than three months
- Multi-year Competences and Talents residence permit.
It is advisable to start your application process as early as possible. Assistance payments are made retroactively from the date the application is created.
You must create an account and make your request online on the CAF website
You can also access financial assistance for your children's education.
Finally, state employees may be eligible for additional support based on their status and employer.
For possible assistance available to contract employees of the University of Strasbourg, please refer to the SPACS website for more information.
In France, there are various childcare options available for children from 2 months to 3 years old (group settings, family-based, or in-home care) that allow for a balance between family life and professional life. It is highly recommended to start searching for childcare options very early, even during pregnancy.
Strasbourg also has several bilingual nurseries (English, German) and kindergartens with pedagogical projects. For more information, you can consult the Early Childhood Relay of the City of Strasbourg.
In France, primary schools offer after-school care, both before and after regular school hours, to allow parents to drop off their children earlier and pick them up later to accommodate their work schedules.
This service is fee-based and may also include homework assistance for primary school students.
If your children have been schooled in Strasbourg, and you are preparing to leave the city, you should follow the following steps to withdraw your children from their elementary, middle or high school:
- Inform the school about the date when you will be moving and, therefore, withdrawing your children from the school.
- Obtain a certificate of withdrawal from the school administration.
- Request your child's school records (transcripts, language proficiency certificates, etc.) from the institution, as you will need these when enrolling them in a new school.