Admissions FAQs

Everything important at a glance

Below you will find our Admission FAQs .
If your question is not listed, we would be happy to help you personally, by phone or email.

1. Are children allowed to go home at weekends? How often?

Lessons end on Saturdays after the 4th period at 11.30am. You can sign your children off for the weekend directly with the mentor (until wing time on Sunday evening). To encourage and build a strong feeling of community we would like students to spend at least half of their weekends at Salem. An attractive and varied programme of  events and activities at weekends makes their choice to stay easier. Participation during the "Salem Weekends" (once per epoch) is mandatory for all students.

2. Can students remain in the boarding school over school holidays?

During holiday periods the school is completely closed and students cannot remain in the dormitories. When necessary it is possible to arrange accommodations with a guest family (at additional cost).

3. Are laundry services available? How often?

In keeping with Salem's motto "Building Character By Educating To Take Responsibility" each dormitory wing for Years 7 to 12 is equipped with washing machines and clothes dryers which the students may use by themselves. In addition, each wing has an iron and ironing board. Bedding and towels are washed at no extra fee by the school's laundry service. If necessary other laundry items can be sent to the laundry at an extra charge.

4. Are children allowed to use their smartphones?

Mobile phones may not be carried during the school hours. In Years 5 and 6 the use of mobile phones is permitted exclusively in the Rentamt on weeknights once per evening from 7.30pm to 8.00pm and on Sundays from 12.00pm to 1.00pm. In Years 7 and 8 they may be used also on weekends after school until 30 minutes before bedtime. In Years 9 and 10 mobile phones are permitted in the dormitory every day after school until 9.30pm, on Saturdays until 11.00pm and up to wing-time when a student is off the school grounds.
In case of emergency parents can reach their children through any of the child's care givers and main points of contact (mentors, heads of boarding school etc.).

5. What's the timetable?

Detailed timetables for each class group are published at the beginning of each new school year. A sample copy can be made available upon request.

6. What's the basic provision for my child for Boarding School?

Before beginning school and at the beginning of each school year all students receive an extensive information package about life at boarding school, including a packing list. Please feel free to request a copy of the latest version.

7. How many children are in class?

At present the average number of students in each year group is as follows:

  • in Years 5 and 6 the average is 11
  • in the German-language classes of Years 7 and 8 the average is 14
  • in the German-language classes of Years 9 and 10 the average is 16
  • in the English-language „IC“ class groups for Years 8, 9 and 10 the maximum is 16
  • German as a foreign language (DAF): 7 on average
8. How many children live in one dormitory wing?

In Years 5 and 6 a maximum of 14 students live in one wing in the "Rentamt".

In Years 7 to 10 the average is 18 students on one wing.

In Years 11 and 12 at Schloss Spetzgart (mainly for Year 11 / IB 1) the maximum is 24 students on one wing.

On the Härlen campus (mainly for Year 12 / IB 2) a maximum of 8 students live in one house, which has four 2-bed rooms, 2 WCs and 2 baths. Three houses together make up one dormitory wing.

9. How many students are there altogether in Salem?

Salem Castle (Years 5 to 10): max. 300 students
Spetzgart and Härlen (Years „10 Plus“, 11 and 12): max. 300 students

10. Which „Community Services“ are offered?

At Salem Castle in Years 9 and 10, students take part in the following community services:

  • Fire Brigade
  • Technical Emergency Relief (THW)
  • Emergency First Aid Service
  • Nautical Service
  • Social Services
  • Environmental Protection Service
  • Round Square Service
  • You can learn more about the Salem „Services“ here: [interner Link]

In the Upper School, for Years 11 and 12 as well as „Salem 10 Plus,“ students chose from the following:

  • Fire Brigade
  • Technical Emergency Relief (THW)
  • Emergency First Aid Service
  • Nautical Service
  • Social Services
  • Sustainability Service
  • Botanical Service
  • Café Hahn
  • Music Service
  • Theatre Service
  • Photography Service
  • Global Awareness Network
  • Library Service
11. What clubs and activities are offered?

Depending upon student interest, a wide range of clubs can be organised.

The following overview names only a selection:
Archery; Artisan Crafts; Bicycling; Creative Handicrafts; China Exchange Group; Chinese; Choir; Club House; Cooking; Cultural Excursions; Debating; Decorating by Season; Duke of Edinburgh Award; Fencing; Film; GO; Kayaking; Library; Mathematics; Model United Nations; Nature Conservation; Orchestra; Peterhof Charity; Politics; Pre-Engineering; School Assembly Team; School Band; Snack Bar; Tennis; Theatre; Yearbook  

Creative Activities: 
Rentamt Band, Theatre, Drawing and Art, Ceramics

Artisan Guilds: 
Art, Carpentry, Photography, Precision Mechanics, Robotics, Blacksmithing, Tailoring, Turnery

If there is not sufficient interest in one particular activity, it may not be offered in that school year.

12. Are there lessons for musical instruments?

Lessons are usually arranged as individual instruction on a voluntary basis and take place after school hours. These are given by experienced freelance music teachers on the school grounds and fees are billed separately to the parents.  

Further Informationen

13. Do the students get pocket money?

Students are given pocket money every two weeks. The amount varies per class year, as this also falls within the Salem pedagogical concept of "Building Character By Educating to Take Responsibility." As they grow older students can be increasingly trusted to spend their pocket money responsibly. 

14. Which universities do students attend after graduation?

It is not possible to give a blanket answer to this question. As diverse as the talents and future goals of our students are, so, too, are the career paths of our alumni. The great majority of our graduates, who come from many countries around the world, decide to pursue a university education, both at institutions in Germany and abroad. A solid Abitur or IB Diploma as well as the school experience at Salem open the door to an academic career path. 

Beginning in Year 9 all students at Salem participate in a programme of career counselling organised by two experienced counsellors; furthermore students benefit from the Salem network of teachers, parents, alumni and other closely associated professionals when they need support or advice.

Further informations

Salem offers a post-secondary "orientation year" in preparation for entry to university. It consists, among other things, of academic courses, an extensive lecture series and outward bound weekends.
Although Salem students generally do not make use of this orientation year thanks to the intensive careers counselling programme offered beginning in Year 9 (see above), it remains an option for them to consider.

Further Informations

15. Does the dining hall offer a vegan, lactose-free, and gluten-free meals?

Yes, we are pleased to give consideration to food intolerances or dietary restrictions when provided with the necessary information.
A special dietary plan for medical reasons will require a doctor's certificate.

16. What kind of sports are offered?

From B for basketball to F for football and h for hockey and v for volleyball Salem offers all sorts of sports, including badminton,  body-shaping & fitness training, handball, kayaking, running teams, sailing, swimming (only a selection).

Further Informations

17. What is the daily routine of the children like?

The daily schedule at Schule Schloss Salem is similar for all year groups. We begin the day with a short run, the so-called Morgenlauf (Morning run). Lessons are held in the mornings and early afternoons, with a break for mid-morning snacks. After lunch, there are activities, services, guilds or afternoon lessons, as appropriate to each year group. Each student's schedule is an individual one due to the options available, but follows a general orientation scheme. Every afternoon there is a study hour in which homework assignments are completed and active tutoring is offered. Naturally there are also phases of recreation and inactivity in which students can spend time alone and with their friends. Whenever a student has not enrolled in an activity that takes place in the evening, there is free-time for personal pursuits after dinner.

18. Are girls and boys housed in separate dormitories?

Yes, of course girls and boys are accommodated in separate dormitories.

19. Are scholarships offered? What conditions apply?

At Schule Schloss Salem partial scholarships are awarded to promising candidates for the whole year in accordance with certain criteria. 

Further Informations for scholarships

20. How does the Admission procedures?

The application process begins with submission of your application portfolio. Upon review of these documents and records, we make an appointment for an admissions interview. At that time you will receive extensive information about the school and life in a boarding school along with a school tour in order to become better acquainted with the programme and activities offered at Salem. Usually you will be notified by the school within a week as to whether your child's application has been accepted. 

Further Informations about the Admission

21. Is there a placement test?

All applicants from outside Germany or from a different type of German school must sit placements tests in various subjects. Whether an applicant from another German G8-Gymnasium needs to sit a test is decided on an individual basis.
Applicants for enrolment in Year 5 or Year 6 also sit an assessment test at Salem due to the individual kinds of educational background provided at primary schools.  

22. How high are the school fees?
23. What happens when a student falls ill, such as with a cold?

If a student feels ill in the morning, he or she first speaks with the responsible mentor. Beginning at  6.30am each morning our school nurse holds a consultation-hour in order to dispense medication, prescribe bed rest, if appropriate, and ensure that the child is given whatever care needed. Following lunch-hour, the school doctor holds a consultation-hour at the school infirmary and examines any children who are ill. 

24. Are psychological services available?

Yes. Alongside of the mentor on the dormitory wing, as primary contact person, Schule Schloss Salem has a pastor as well as a team of experts with psychological training who provide care and assistance in case of emergency.

25. Can a student attend Salem for a period of months?

The school offers contracts by the year. Attendance for a trimester is dependent upon the availability of accommodations and can only be determined on an individual basis. 

26. Which foreign languages are offered at Salem?

In general the school follows the Baden-Württemberg curriculum for a G8 Gymnasium. Hence English is taught as the first foreign language as of Year 5 (with separate classes for native speakers). In Year 6 students chose between Latin and French as a second foreign language. From Year 8 students can chose an academic profile with Spanish or French as a third foreign language. Alternatively a science-oriented profile can be elected, or -- in the German-language track -- music as the academic profile.

27. Are there Student visas for non-EU applicants?

•    We advise all applicants from outside the EU who wish to attend Schule Schloss Salem to apply at the latest by the end of March for the following school year. Past experience shows that the visa application process can take a very long time. All students who do not have a German or a European passport will need a permanent residency permit for Germany. If you have any further questions, the Admissions Office will be happy to advise you.

28. Do I have to insure my child?

For students from abroad Schule Schloss Salem recommends taking out health insurance while attending the school. If interested, please contact the team of the Admissions Office.

29. Can my child visit Salem and try out boarding school life?

If your child has successfully completed the admissions process, the school offers "taster days" for children in grades 5 to 10 at Salem: Your child can experience the boarding school and school life for a maximum of 3 days (2 nights) if he or she has already applied for a place at the school with the complete application documents. The fee is €100 per night and will be deducted from the tuition and boarding fees when the contract is signed for the same school year. Appointments can be made with the Admissions Department. For further information on our Taster Days please see the page "Taster Days at Schule Schloss Salem".