dpatopbilder - 02.07.2022, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Stralsund: Fahrgäste warten im Bahnhof auf eine Regionalbahn. Das Sommerwetter nutzen viele Urlauber und Tagesgäste für einen Strandbesuch an der Ostseeküste und nutzen dafür auch das Neun-Euro-Ticket der Bahn. Foto: Stefan Sauer/dpa +++ dpa-Bildfunk +++

For the pupils in Berlin and Brandenburg, the summer holidays begin after the certificate is awarded on Wednesday. Schools will remain closed until August 22 – and for many children and young people and their parents, vacation time is travel time. Deutsche Bahn and BER Airport are expecting bottlenecks. An overview.

On Wednesday, around 298,600 children and young people at 923 schools in Brandenburg will receive their certificates. The 2021/2022 school year was again unusual due to the corona pandemic. After starting with face-to-face classes and without masks, the compulsory presence was lifted at the end of November, the mask requirement was introduced for everyone and a test requirement for the youngest. The measures were gradually lifted again this year.

It was the third year of school under pandemic conditions – albeit without a lockdown. Around 375,000 pupils at general schools now receive their certificates. The school year also ends for almost 5,000 children and young people who fled to Berlin to escape the war in Ukraine. According to the education administration, there are 1,000 places available for refugee and immigrant children and young people in the holiday schools.

There they can improve their language skills in German and take advantage of leisure activities such as exploring the city, sports programs and art workshops. There is a separate offer for those who have just arrived from Ukraine and who are not yet going to school. For them there is the “Fit for school learning groups” to prepare for the new school year.

According to the results of the nationwide education study by the Institute for Quality Development in Education (IQB), fourth graders in Germany have increasing spelling, reading and math problems. “The result is that since 2011, fourth-graders have been six months behind in terms of skills in German and math,” Brandenburg’s Education Minister Britta Ernst (SPD) told the German Press Agency. According to the authors, this development is partly due to the restrictions imposed by the corona pandemic.

After the summer holidays, the schools in Brandenburg will first determine how big the gaps are with learning status surveys. Among other things, Ernst relies on the “Catching up after Corona” program, which has also been promoting extracurricular programs since autumn 2021. At that time it was initially 3000 euros for each school. In the coming school year, the schools are to have an annual budget of over 10,000 euros for extracurricular activities, graded according to school type.

Deutsche Bahn (DB) expects the summer holidays to start on Thursday in Berlin and Brandenburg with higher capacity utilization, especially along the tourist routes. “The desire to travel is greater than ever this summer,” said a DB spokesman. However, fewer schoolchildren and commuters are on the go during the holiday season. The trains to the holiday areas on the North and Baltic Seas as well as in southern Germany and Austria are currently in particularly high demand.

Deutsche Bahn had already increased staff on trains and at stations for the months of the 9-euro ticket. “More than 700 additional service and security staff coordinate entry and exit, support travelers with luggage or bicycles and are available for information,” said the DB spokesman. “That’s four times as many as in a normal summer.” If possible, travelers should refrain from cycling on the train.

The operators at the capital’s airport BER expect around three million passengers for the summer holidays. The busiest day will therefore be next Friday. “We expect around 80,000 passengers there,” said airport boss Aletta von Massenbach last week. The previous peak day during the corona pandemic was therefore the Friday before Pentecost with 77,000 passengers.

The operators recommend travelers to be there at least 2.5 hours before departure and to stow as much as possible in checked baggage so that security checks go faster.

According to von Massenbach, more than 130 airport employees have volunteered to help out in the terminal during peak times and to support passengers with the processes. Passengers can shorten the check-in process at almost 120 machines. The airlines Easyjet, Lufthansa and Eurowings also offer baggage drop-off on the evening before departure.