German School London

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Deutsche Schule London (German School London)
Deutsche School London Logo
Douglas House - - 1176148.jpg
Douglas House, Petersham Road, Richmond TW10 7AH
Petersham, London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, United Kingdom
Coordinates 51°26′42.6″N 0°18′18.9″W / 51.445167°N 0.305250°W / 51.445167; -0.305250Coordinates: 51°26′42.6″N 0°18′18.9″W / 51.445167°N 0.305250°W / 51.445167; -0.305250
Type German School
Established 1971
Head of School Marie-Luise Balkenhol[1]
Enrolment 690[2]
Mascot Panda
Newspaper DSLive

The German School London (German: Deutsche Schule London) is a private school based at the Grade II* listed[3] building Douglas House in Petersham[4] in the London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames. It includes a kindergarten, pre-school, elementary school, middle school and upper school. The German School London is one of 140 schools abroad that the Federal Republic of Germany and the local school association has established to promote the German culture and language in other countries.[1][5] More recently the German School London has established a bilingual system so that students have the choice between two different qualifications, the Abitur and the International Baccalaureate.[1]


The Federal Republic of Germany bought Douglas House and grounds in 1969 and built a school around it. The house became the reception and school offices. The school opened in September 1971.[6]

Additional school buildings, designed by the German firm Kersten Mertinoff & Struhk, were erected in the grounds between 1972 and 1983.[7] The executive architects were W H Marmorek and Clifford Culpin & Partners.[7]


The German School, London

The school consists of four main buildings[8] – a building for the upper and middle school, a newly established building for the elementary school,[8] a building for pre-school and kindergarten and a sports building including a gymnasium, a swimming pool and changing rooms.


Kindergarten and pre-school[edit]

The bilingual[9] kindergarten and pre-school focus on preparing the children for elementary school, teaching children how to deal with certain situations and helping them develop self-confidence and independence. Since July 2013 the school has been exempt from the British EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) learning and development requirements and is now guided by Baden-Wuerttemberg's curriculum.[10]

Elementary school[edit]

The curriculum in the elementary school consists of German, English, mathematics, music, arts, religion and physical education.

Middle school and upper school[edit]

In middle and upper school students study 10 to 13 subjects – German, English, French or Latin, mathematics, physics, chemistry, music, arts, religion or ethics, history, geography and politics. Students can choose Spanish as an additional language. The number and variety of subjects varies according to the student's grade. The school offers a broad and differentiated education with bilingual units for different talents and prepares students for university life.


The school has offered the International Baccalaureate since 2010;[11] it is taught in English.[11] Students in grades 11 and 12 can, if they wish, study for both the International Baccalaureate and the Abitur.[1][12]

School life[edit]

Sport, music and art[edit]

Teams from the school have taken part in international sporting events in soccer, basketball,[13] volleyball,[14] badminton and tennis.

Students take part in school concerts and in the Jugend musiziert competition, an international music competition in Germany between children and young people held at regional, federal and national level. The school also takes part in art competitions such as the annual exhibition of the Royal College of Art.

School exchanges[edit]

The school operates a programme of school exchange visits, where the students visit a different school for a day and participate in the classes, and family exchange visits where they meet their exchange partner on a Friday afternoon and spend time with them and their family until the Saturday. There are also programmes for students in Years 10, 11 and 12, where they visit the Russell School to teach the German language and culture to Year 5 students.[15]

School charity[edit]

The school has its own charity group, DSL-aktiv, founded in 2010. Every year students in the group choose a different charity to support and organise activities and projects to fundraise for it.[16]

School events[edit]

The school is not only focused on teaching the German curriculum but also on promoting German culture. Every school year there are readings by authors and poets and performances by musicians. German author Cornelia Funke visited the school in 2010.[17]


  1. ^ a b c d Marie-Luise Balkenhol. "Welcome". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  2. ^ "The German School". The Good Schools Guide. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  3. ^ "Douglas House". The National Heritage List for England. English Heritage. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  4. ^ "School location". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  5. ^ "German Schools Abroad". Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany London. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  6. ^ "Establishment: The German School". Department for Education. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Cherry, Bridget and Pevsner, Nikolaus (1983). The Buildings of England – London 2: South. London: Penguin Books. p. 516. ISBN 0 14 0710 47 7. 
  8. ^ a b "German School London". Education. Schoenaich Landscape Architects. Retrieved 12 September 2013. 
  9. ^ German and English are both used."Kindergarten & Preschool". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  10. ^ "Curriculum for Kindergarten and Preschool at German School London". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "Deutsche Schule London". International Baccalaureate. Retrieved 27 September 2013. 
  12. ^ "IB preface". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  13. ^ "German School mourns loss of 'larger than life' teacher". Richmond and Twickenham Times. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  14. ^ "German School pipped in semis". Richmond and Twickenham Times. 8 November 2007. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  15. ^ "Exchanges". Deutsche Schule London. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  16. ^ "DSLActiv". DSLActivCharity. Retrieved 13 September 2013. 
  17. ^ "DSL Students meet Cornelia Funke". DSLive. Sep–Oct 2010. 

External links[edit]