nightrose83 (nightrose83) wrote in little_details,

[ANSWERED] School Terms Used in Germany in the 60s/70s

Hi all,


Background: My MC's mother was born in 1956 and lived in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.

Question: How might she express saying that she's in a specific grade in Gymnasium? I've already asked people over in Multilingual, and they gave me a starting point. Apparently, they used to use this system:

5th school year = Sexta (student = Sextaner)
6th school year = Quinta (student = Quintaner)
7th school year = Quarta (student = Quartaner)
8th school year = Untertertia (student = (Unter)Tertianer)
9th school year = Obertertia (student = (Ober)Tertianer)
10th school year = Untersekunda (student = (Unter)Sekundaner)
11th school year = Obersekunda (student = (Ober)Sekundaner)
12th school year = Unterprima (student = (Unter)Primaner)
13th school year= Oberprima (student = (Ober)Primaner)

But according to the German Wikipedia, they decided to switch to using the numbered year and '-klässen' for primary/secondary students in the 60s and it didn't completely switch to that way of saying it everywhere until the late 70s.

So which one would it have been more likely for my MC's mother to use? I'm looking specifically for first-hand information, but close guesses would also work.

Googled: This link: and used the Multilingual comm.
Tags: 1960-1969, 1970-1979, germany (misc), germany: education (misc)

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