I spoke with a very friendly woman from the Integration Office today. She informed me that not only am I eligible to take an integration course, I am obliged to take one! I have been in Germany for nearly five months, and this is the first time someone has told me this. (If only I had known right away … I would have started months ago!)
The confusion comes from my current status. I was given a two-year residence permit based on my husband’s status. If we decide to leave within two years, it won’t matter. If we want to stay longer, however, I need to learn German. It seems that my residence permit likely won’t be renewed if I don’t take an integration course.
Ah, bureaucracy. So many rules, so little communication.
Unfortunately, I had this meeting just a little too late. The course I want to take (a fast-paced, afternoon course for people who are comfortable learning languages more quickly) begins on Thursday. When does the school do consultations for new students? Friday. If I miss this course, I have to wait another month for the next one to start—and that class is at 8:30 AM, 5 days a week. I’m not a morning person. I’m going to call to see if I can sneak into the course this week somehow … we’ll see how it goes!