Home > Workplace > Germany > 2008-06-26 - Federal Administrative Court, n. 2 C 22/07

2008-06-26 - Federal Administrative Court, n. 2 C 22/07

Workplace · Germany · Dress code · Headscarf

A woman, who does not remove her headscarf, cannot be refused the position of a trainee teacher in a public school

Key facts of the case - A woman who had graduated from University wanted to work as a trainee teacher. She refused to take off her headscarf for this.

Main reasoning of the court - The Court held that a trainee teacher does not have to obey the rules on religious neutrality of the teachers at school. In the instant case, § 59 IV of the Bremen School Act forbids teachers to express their confession through religious clothing. The Court ruled that this is not applicable for trainee teachers, because otherwise their occupational freedom granted in Art. 12 I GG (Basic Law) would be violated. The occupation as a trainee teacher at a state school is compulsory for working at state as well as private schools afterwards.
Not admitting the woman as trainee in the state school would make it impossible for her to work at a private school, where she might be allowed to wear her headscarf. Therefore, her occupational freedom is infringed.
The Court saw a difference between the teachers who have the status of a civil servant and the trainee teachers who work only temporarily at a public school. Whereas the civil servants as representatives of the State have to be neutral, trainee teachers are allowed to show their religious convictions.