Europe German is third most common foreign language in EU secondary schools

Based on figures for 2021, German is the third most common foreign language at lower secondary level taught in the EU. The most common languages are English and French. The percentage of pupils learning German was particularly high in Czechia (48%), Poland (49%), the Netherlands (57%), Denmark (76%) and Luxembourg (88%).

Please note: In the Luxembourg education system, German language is classed as a foreign language despite the fact that German is one of the country’s official languages. According to the Eurostat definition lower secondary education (ISCED level 2) continues the basic programmes of the primary level. The end of lower secondary education coincides generally with the end of compulsory education.

Last update: 05.10.2023. The Eurostat database and Statistics Explained contains more information on foreign language learning. For more data on schools in Germany please consult the national education section.