Childcare and School

A short explanation of the Swedish education system

Preschool is available for children 1–5 years old. From the age of six, children have the right to start in the preschool class and the majority of six-year-olds do so. Children between ages 7–16 attend compulsory school. Most continue with a three-year upper secondary school leading to a vocational diploma and/or qualifications for further studies. All education provided by the state is free.

Preschool and school in Umeå

Children between the ages of one and five may attend preschool while their parents/guardians are working, are on parental leave, or are looking for work. It is the municipality or the organiser that decides the cost of a place in preschool. The Education Act states that the fee should be reasonable. Family day-care homes are also available in most of the residential areas in Umeå. The main principle is to get a place as close to the residential area as possible. However, you have the option to choose a specific preschool or childminder.

If your children require preschool, you should apply as soon as possible as the waiting list can be quite long. On the website of Umeå Municipality you will find more information on how to apply.

Students in compulsory school grade 1-9 have the option to begin at one of Umeå Municipality's schools or begin in another school chosen by their guardian. Foreign upper secondary school students are able to go a preparatory programme with language introduction and then continue on a national programme. The preparatory programme is for foreign students aged 16-18 that need to prepare before the continuation of upper secondary school, college or adult education.

Upon arrival, we recommend you to book a meeting for personal consultation with the Reception Centre at Umeå Municipality.

Contact person at Umeå Municipality: Agneta Sundberg School Administrator, telephone: +46 90-16 27 21, e-mail

Please visit the website of Umeå Municipality for more information.


In case you need a babysitter you can get in touch with babysitters via an online meeting place called Babysits. Read more

Rosita Nilsson