Home Education in Hungary

How can I educate my child at home in Hungary?

Social background:

The mother can stay at home for 3 years after childbirth. The financial support is in the first half-year higher, then for 1.5 years less, after the child’s second birthday very little.

The mother can stay at home with at least 3 children as „full-time” mother until the 8. year of the youngest or the 18. year of the eldest child. The allowance is rather little, but this period is recognised in the working time.

Obligatory nursery school: from age 5.

At the parents’ request the child may be exempted if the head of the nursery gives her consent.

If the child did not attend the last year of the nursery, he must have a school maturity exam (at the Pedagogic Service). If he does not pass the exam, he has to attend the nursery for one more year. In this case it is difficult to exempt the child from the nursery school.

According to the latest law (valid from 1 September 2015):

The nursery is compulsory from age 3 (if the child is 3 by 31 August), from the beginning of the school year at least a 4-hour nursery attendance in the morning is compulsory. The child can be exempted until he is 5. The parents can apply for exemption by the town-clerk of the locality. It will only be allowed if the nursery head and the district nurse support the request.

Exemption from age 5 is not possible. (So the last year of the nursery is taken more strictly than the compulsory education.)

Obligatory education: from age 6 (if the child is 6 by 31 May)-16 years

Valid from 1 January 2013: a child has to attend school from the year in which he is 6 by 31 August.

Legal status: the Hungarian law allows the parents to teach their children at home as private, individual pupils.

The child has to be registered in a school, there it have exams twice a year. The adequacy of the preparations is the responsibility of the parents. The child has to learn from coursebooks which are accepted by the state. (It depends on the school and the formteacher which publisher and coursebook series are preferred.)

Number of homeschoolers: rising, many juniors

In the school year 2007/2008 there were in the primary school and junior high school (1-8. classes) altogether 5600 individuall pupils because of different reasons (beeing abroad, disabled, handicapped etc.) - 2300 chose it on their own.

Nevertheless it is hard to find out how many conscious families committed for homeschooling there are. Careful estimates count about 100-150 families (with more children).

For more questions contact: