Social pedagogical and social care professions; application for recognition of a foreign qualification
If you would like to work permanently in Bavaria in a specific social education and social care profession, you can apply for recognition of your foreign qualification.
Certain social education and social care professions are regulated by the state in Bavaria. This means that you must have recognition of your foreign qualification if you want to work in this profession permanently in Bavaria. Other social pedagogical and social care professions are not regulated. Recognition of your qualification is not mandatory to start working, but it can be useful. You can apply for recognition at the Bavarian State Office for Schools.
The following professions are regulated by the state in Bavaria:
- state-recognized educator (Bachelor Professional in Social Work)
- state-certified curative education nurse (Bachelor Professional in Social Work)
- state-certified remedial teacher (Bachelor Professional in Social Work)
In order to practice one of these professions permanently in Bavaria, you must apply for recognition of your foreign qualification.
In accordance with the Bavarian Professional Qualification Determination Act (BayBQFG), you can apply for an equivalence determination if you have successfully completed vocational training abroad and are authorized to practice the profession in the country of training.
It may also be possible to take up a professional activity, e.g. within the framework of fixed-term contracts or temporary contracts, without formal recognition of your foreign qualification. In these cases, the respective employer or institution or the responsible supervisory authority decides on the employment.
The following professions are not regulated by the state in Bavaria:
- state-certified family nurse (Bachelor Professional in Social Work)
- state-certified child care worker (Kinderpfleger(in))
- state-approved assistant for special education (Heilerziehungspflegehelfer(in))
- state-certified social care worker (m/f)
In order to be able to work in Bavaria in one of these professions, recognition of your foreign qualification is not mandatory.
It is often possible to take up a job without formal recognition of your foreign qualification. In principle, it is the employer or the institution provider or the responsible supervisory authority that decides whether to hire you.
A recognition procedure can be useful in order to make your foreign qualification more transparent and easier to assess for the employer.
In accordance with the Bavarian Vocational Qualifications Assessment Act (BayBQFG), you can apply for an equivalence assessment if you have successfully completed vocational training abroad.
You can apply for a determination of equivalence in accordance with the Bavarian Vocational Qualifications Determination Act (BayBQFG), provided that you have
- have successfully completed vocational training abroad and - in the area of regulated professions - are authorized to practice the profession in the country of training, and
- intend to pursue gainful employment in Bavaria.
An application can be submitted regardless of citizenship and residence status.
Sufficient German language skills are also expected for the exercise of the profession.
You can submit the application for recognition of your foreign qualification in writing or electronically via the secure communication platform to the Certificate Recognition Office of the Bavarian State Office for Schools.
First, they will check whether your foreign qualification can be assigned to the reference occupation you specified. If necessary, the State Office for Schools will inform you which other office is responsible for you. In this case, you can withdraw the application free of charge.
Within the framework of the equivalence examination of your foreign qualification, the State Office for Schools checks in particular whether you are authorized to practice the profession in the country of training and whether there are significant differences between the foreign qualification and the corresponding Bavarian vocational training.
Proof of relevant professional experience (from abroad or from Germany) as well as other proof of qualification (e.g. additional qualifications or further and advanced training) are also taken into account.
The following applies to occupations regulated by the state of Bavaria (see description):
- If there are significant differences and at the same time comparable qualification contents, the significant differences can be compensated within the framework of a compensatory measure. You can choose between an adaptation course and an aptitude test.
- If no significant differences are found or if the compensatory measure has been completed in full, the full equivalence of your foreign qualification can be determined.
The following applies to professions that are not state-regulated in the Free State of Bavaria (see description):
- If no substantial differences are found, the full equivalence of your foreign qualification can be determined.
- If there are substantial differences and at the same time comparable qualification contents, the existing qualifications as well as the differences to the Bavarian qualification are described in the notice.
Late repatriates can alternatively submit an application for the determination of equivalence in accordance with the Federal Expellees Act (BVFG).
Within the framework of this free procedure - in contrast to the procedure according to the Bavarian Vocational Qualification Assessment Act (BayBQFG) - professional experience and/or further education cannot be taken into account.
Late repatriates can choose whether to submit an application in accordance with the BayBQFG or the Federal Expellees Act (BVFG).
If an application is submitted in accordance with BVFG, it must be accompanied by appropriate proof (Spätaussiedlerbescheinigung / ID card for displaced persons).
The State Office for Schools will confirm receipt of your application within one month and, if necessary, inform you which documents need to be supplemented. If the documents are complete, the decision will be made within three months. In justified cases, this period may be reasonably extended.
The following documents must be submitted:
- Signed application form
- If applicable: Decision on professional recognition (by another competent body).
- For persons who are not citizens of the EU/EEA/Switzerland or whose place of residence is outside these states: Declaration of intention to work (e.g. proof of application for an entry visa for gainful employment, proof of contact with employer).
- Proof of identity (ID card or passport, photo page only - serial numbers and photo may be redacted).
- If applicable: Proof of name change (marriage certificate).
- if applicable: Spätaussiedlerbescheinigung or Vertriebenenbescheinigung (certificate of expellees)
- Curriculum vitae in tabular form with detailed information on school education, vocational training, further training and work experience
- School-leaving certificate from the last general school attended (before entering vocational school) - with translation*.
- Evidence of foreign professional qualification (diploma, certificate, diploma, etc.) - with translation*.
- Supplementary documents on professional qualification (e.g. scope and main contents of theoretical subjects taught / scope and main contents of practical training / overview of subjects taught and number of lessons at school (time table)) - with translation*
- if applicable: Diploma Supplement - with translation*
- if applicable: Evidence of relevant work experience in the learned profession (e.g. work certificates, work books, letters of reference)
- if applicable: other proof of qualifications (e.g. additional qualifications acquired, further education/training, retraining)
All the above-mentioned educational certificates (including proof of professional experience and certificates of competence) must be submitted in the original language as well as in translation into German by a publicly appointed or sworn translator.
In principle, the submission of the above documents in the form of photocopies or in electronic form (pdf files) is sufficient; in certain cases, the submission of officially certified photocopies or originals is additionally required. You will be notified separately about this if required.
The recognition procedure in accordance with the Bavarian Vocational Qualifications Assessment Act (BayBQFG) is subject to a fee.
The Bavarian State Office for Schools charges a fee of between 200.00 and 600.00 EUR plus expenses for carrying out the recognition procedure, depending on the effort involved.
If significant differences need to be reconciled (see procedure), additional fees of between EUR 50.00 and EUR 100.00 plus expenses will be charged for issuing a final notice.
Costs for adaptation course/aptitude test: The amount depends on which substantial differences exist and can therefore vary considerably. The costs for this will be charged separately by the implementing bodies.
Other costs, e.g. for translations and certifications, must be borne by you.
Unemployed and job-seeking applicants should check with their relevant employment agencies or job centers before submitting an application to see whether the costs can be covered by the employment service.
The recognition procedure in accordance with the Federal Expellees Act (BVFG) (see Special Instructions) is free of charge.
An appeal (administrative court action) is permitted against the decision of the competent body. This allows you to take legal action against the decision so that it can be reviewed. Details on this can be found in the information on legal remedies at the end of your decision. However, you are advised to clarify the disputed issues with the responsible office before filing an appeal.
Links to more information
Responsible for editing: Bayerisches Landesamt für Schule
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- Prefillable Form, Bavaria-wide
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