Pursuing a Career in Germany as a School-dropout

In Kenya in 2003, the proportion of 16 and 17 year olds without access to education was 9.1 percent. Of those who attended school, 16.1 percent dropped out without completing primary school. In addition, we also estimated that 45 percent of 16 and 17 year olds in Kenya are still in primary school, which means that these children are over age, with an increased risk of dropping out. Only 38 percent of these cohorts completed primary school. Assuming that the educational experience of these cohorts reflects the inefficiencies of the system, then Kenya has a relatively big problem of over age children in primary school, but a relatively small problem with respect to access to school and relatively sustained enrolment rates. 

We all know to be successful in Germany, you don’t necessarily have to go to University and get a degree and even doing that does not guarantee success. We also know that Germans love qualifications and paperwork, meaning you can almost get nowhere with no papers/qualifications. Odd jobs are ok in the beginning when you’re still thinking in shillings but after a while and realizing that you live in Germany and you start getting bills in Euros you realize that as much as 40K in shillings might be a lot of money; when converted to €400 you can barely pay for the basics, of course this is assuming you are not on welfare.

So what if you never got a chance to complete your studies back home? Are you doomed to odd jobs for the rest of your life? NO. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. The only people I’d agree with if they aren’t interested in running after qualifications, would be those over 60, as they would be about to retire in Germany anyway. But didn’t Maruge at 80 going to primary school not encourage you??? It’s never too late to get it.

For all these you should have at least reached class 8, so for the Kenyans you should have at least done your KCPE exam.

What chances do you have to catch up and get yourself a high school certificate plus an Ausbildung? Numerous opportunities to choose from:



These are the online schools where you can learn anything as you continue with your normal life. You take the classes whenever you have time, at your own pace then take the exam offered by the state and you get a High School Certificate (either Hauptschulabschluss or Realschulreife depending on your state and what you sign up for). If you’re syked enough, you can even continue to get an Abi also at the Fernakademie.

The rest mentioned here, focus more on preparing you for an Ausbildung that just gives you the Certificate. In most of the following you can get the chance to have the year spent at these schools recognized and it reduces the amount of time needed to finish the Ausbildung.

Berufsvorbereitungsjahr (BVJ)

One year is spent both going to school as well as trying out different professions so that you can make up your mind about what to do in future.

Berufsgrundbildungsjahr (BGJ) (Berufsgrundschuljahr)

Allows you to get a lot of practical knowledge as well as an equivalent to Hauptschulabschluss. Though it’s aimed at those that failed to garner an Ausbildungplatz. For some Ausbildungen, they do consider what you learnt at the BGJ and this helps shorten the duration for your Ausbildung.

Berufsvorbereitende Bildungsmaßnahme (BvB)

This takes between 10-18months, you work at different workshops or professions to decide what you would like to do, and it allows you to get a Hauptschulabschluss equivalent.


A one or two year course where you learn the specifics of a certain profession and at the end you get an equivalent to Hauptschulabschluss.

Nicht Schülerprüfung/ Externe Prüfung

This is offered by the specific state for those that would want to repeat/do the Hauptschulprüfung without necessarily getting into the Ausbildung set fields above. For the preparation classes, you can check out the VHS or some of the Fernstudium sites like ils, fernstudium etc


This has an age limit of 25yrs, and takes 6-18months where you attend Berufschule as well as take up an internship in a profession of your choice.

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