Most children in Denmark are enrolled in a day-care programme before they begin primary school. Children aged 0-3 go to nurseries and children aged 3-6 go to kindergarten. Children in Denmark start primary school the year they turn 6 years old.
All day care institutions in Denmark have educated staff taking care of the children. Besides, all day care institutions in Denmark are obliged by law to carry out an educational curriculum. It means that all institutions have activities strengthening the children’s social and language competences among others.
Enrollment and costs
Most municipalities have waiting lists for day care. In the Municipality of Copenhagen, you will be guaranteed a day care spot within two months as soon as your child is enrolled for a day care.
To enrol your child in a public day care facility, please contact the municipality and ask for "Pladsanvisningen". You are also welcome to contact ISM if you need help for this.
Childcare is financed partly by the parents, partly by the municipality. Prices differ depending on the municipality, the type of childcare and the household income.
Nursery or “Vuggestue”
Nurseries are for children between six months and three years of age. The staff members are educated in looking after the needs of your child. Your child will be looked after together with a group of other children at the same age.
“Studenterrådets Integrerede Institution” is a nursery in the Municipality of Copenhagen. Here, children, whose parents work at the University of Copenhagen, have priority. Please contact Stine Kloppenborg for more information.
Kindergarten or “Børnehave”
In Denmark, most children go to Kindergarten, also called Børnehave, when they are around three years old.
A lot of the childcare options are age-integrated institutions, which means that the nursery and kindergarten is located in the same place and under the same name. In this case the child does not have to be enrolled for a kindergarten spot, but will automatically go to the kindergarten after the nursery.
If your child is in a nursery, which is not integrated with a kindergarten, you have to enrol your child in a kindergarten. Normally, the staff of the nursery will help you with this.