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Old 22.04.2016, 16:57
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New to Zug

Hi

I am moving to Zug (from the US) in the fall and I have been reading the threads about education + rent. And much more.

I have two kids 6 and 5 and I want them to go to the public school (they don't know German at all) so for them to learn the language fast is important.
I expect a difficult school year because of the language barrier.

It is clear to me that I need to find an apartment or house to rent where I want to send my kids to school. Reading the posts did not help me decide yet where I need to look for apartments.

Could any of you give me some idea of where to look to rent. I was thinking BAAR or CHAM just because its between Zug and Zurich, but I am more interested in a good public school that will help my children integrate and learn not just the language but stay on target with the curriculum.

If you could give me some tips it would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance.
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Old 22.04.2016, 17:55
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Re: New to Zug

All Swiss public schools are good at integration so it's really a question of where you need to look in relation to your workplace. Children start proper school here later so the 5 year old will still be attending kindergarten most likely.

You don't get a choice of school, your children will go to the school nearest to where you live.
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Old 23.04.2016, 00:07
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Re: New to Zug

Hi changeforall!
That is exciting for you all! I agree that most of the public school here in Switzerland are great! The ones in Baar/Zug and Cham have excellent reputations and I happen to know teachers that work there personally and they are fantastic!
So, I wouldn't worry too much about which school to chose if you stay within the Zug area!
Rent is cheaper in Baar and Cham or Steinhausen (also good school) than in Zug itself!
If you have any further questions, don't hesitate to PM me!
Have a lovely day!
Lisa
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Old 23.04.2016, 02:07
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Re: New to Zug

I'd agree with the posters above, school in any of the areas mentioned by yourself or others are all fine.

It's great that you will put them through the local school - yes, it will be an adjustment for them with the language, but learn it yourself and try to speak a little at home. That way, even if the kids are having a tough time, they also realise that you are involved in learning this new language and it will help them.

If you are working in Zurich, then train connections are better from Baar. If you drive, Steinhausen or Cham are right by the motorway.

Cham is a really nice area right on the lake. Baar and Steinhausen are not exactly by the lake, but also are good in their own right.

In my opinion, Baar is very international and you hear a lot of English being spoken. Cham and Steinhausen less so.
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Old 23.04.2016, 17:33
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Re: New to Zug

Thank you all for the quick reply.

Now that I know more about schools housing will be the next step.

I just remembered I read about WEDNESDAY being off for school. Did I misunderstand? what is with Wednesdays?

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Old 23.04.2016, 18:54
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Re: New to Zug

It's Wednesday afternoons. Most Swiss schools, (some are different, so check with each school), let out every day between noon and 1:30 and Wednesday afternoons from noon onward.

Also, you are going to be gobsmacked by the number of holidays and random days off. Just be prepared that it will seem like your kids are never in school.
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Old 23.04.2016, 22:29
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Re: New to Zug

Welcome to Zug! We moved to Baar last summer and have been really satisfied with the schools here as well as the area in general. I think it is definitely a good choice to put your children in a Swiss school.

Depending on when your oldest was born he/she might still be eligible for kindergarten which is like preschool here. I would definitely recommend it instead of rushing into 1st grade of primary school. The days in "kindski" are shorter and it's more learning by playing than full on studying. The foreign children get German lessons already in kindergarten making the language the only thing they need to learn so there is less stress for the kid.

We applied to kindergarten first but because my son was born in February he had to start school in August (cutoff is March). It was a really tough time for him having to learn a new language and all the normal school subjects. After about two months we finally managed to get him transferred "back" to kindergarten. After that everything worked out great. Suddenly about 5-6 months later he was suddenly fluent in Swiss German. We recently had the school readiness interview and got great feedback from the teacher. She also confirmed that moving to kindski was absolutely the right thing to do.

I hope everything works well for your family.

P.S.One nice benefit in Baar is that the kids get a lot of swimming instruction. In kindski one morning every second week and at school one morning every week. My son's school even has a dedicated full-time swimming instructor. The reason behind all of this is because the biggest swimming facility in the area is in Baar.
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Old 24.04.2016, 06:44
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Re: New to Zug

We are not there yet and I am trying to find out as much as possible to make the transition/ the move as easy as possible.
I want to make sure the kids get in the public school where they can learn the language as soon as possible.

My son will be 7 this year in December. I think he will be in 1st grade and I worry he will have a hard time because of the language.
I would prefer kindergarten or kindski or what is before 1st grade to get him ready. I am not sure if its possible .
My daughter turns 5 next month.

I do not remember what is the enrollment process. None of us speak Swiss German. Do we register them at the Town Hall? I assume they speak English there. What documents do we need to have in order to enroll them?

Thank you all so much for your replies. I am finding out more and more, and things start to shape up in my head.
Thanks,
Ibi
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Old 24.04.2016, 07:52
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Re: New to Zug

I also can recommend Cham as a good place to live with a great school. My wife's sister lived there for three years with a daughter who had started in the public school at 8.
You should look at the http://www.cham.ch/de/bildung/ Use bing translator to view the web pages in English. Then contact the school and they will explain the next steps. Your kids will get three years of DATS which are extra lessons to help them learn the German and integrate.
My kids started in the french part of Switzerland for 5 years and then for the last 2 years we have been on the German side. With the help of the schools they have both integrated very well and now speak three languages fluently.
Hope this helps
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Old 24.04.2016, 10:27
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Re: New to Zug

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My son will be 7 this year in December. I think he will be in 1st grade and I worry he will have a hard time because of the language.

I would prefer kindergarten or kindski or what is before 1st grade to get him ready. I am not sure if its possible .

My daughter turns 5 next month.



I do not remember what is the enrollment process. None of us speak Swiss German. Do we register them at the Town Hall? I assume they speak English there. What documents do we need to have in order to enroll them?



It does sound like your son will start school but it still won't hurt to ask about the kindergarten option.

For the enrollment process all you need is an address. There is a form which you fill in and send by post and you get all the info back by post. It would not hurt to call the school office either - especially if you arrive mid-semester. All teachers have to study a bit of English so in theory they should know it. In practice it depends. Not sure if the other staff has to know English but this is Zug so you're not the first foreigner to arrive. It will work out somehow. Everyone will definitely speak High German in addition to Swiss German.


Finally, here's the site for schools in Baar: http://www.schulen-baar.ch/de/
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Old 26.04.2016, 16:52
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Re: New to Zug

Thanks for the links provided.

Any of you members of the Moms club or the International Womens club?
Is there something that you wish you would have known when you moved?

I wish I would know German.

Thanks again for all your help.
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Old 26.04.2016, 18:59
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Re: New to Zug

My 11-year son started cold turkey at the local public school here in Oberwil last April. Coming from Canada, this is a huge transition for him. The teachers here are awesome, with a remedial teacher assigned to help him with his German. We applied through here.

Click here for info on schooling in Zug. We completed this form to apply for the Oberwil school. We received a confirmation within a week or so.

Daily lunch break is from 12pm to 2pm. You can have lunch catered by the school district or kids can go home for lunch. If you are interested in lunch or after-school care, click here. There's no school on Wed afternoon so school is done at noon.

Schooling is completely free in Switzerland. Even textbooks and workbooks are free. There are excursions and lots of regular sporting events held away from Oberwil (skating, swimming, etc), and all of these are free, including transportation. This past year, my son has gone on a highly subsidized ski trip to Davos costing just Fr250! This included transportation, lodging, ski passes & food for 5 days!

Because my son's first language is English, he attends an advance English class near downtown Zug, together with kids from other schools in similar situation. This is also part of Zug's curriculum, as the English lesson in Oberwil is too basic for him. This class is held every other week for an hour.

I'm more than happy to provide additional info.

Good luck!
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Old 26.04.2016, 21:02
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Re: New to Zug

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My 11-year son started cold turkey at the local public school here in Oberwil last April. Coming from Canada, this is a huge transition for him. The teachers here are awesome, with a remedial teacher assigned to help him with his German. We applied through here.

Click here for info on schooling in Zug. We completed this form to apply for the Oberwil school. We received a confirmation within a week or so.

Daily lunch break is from 12pm to 2pm. You can have lunch catered by the school district or kids can go home for lunch. If you are interested in lunch or after-school care, click here. There's no school on Wed afternoon so school is done at noon.

Schooling is completely free in Switzerland. Even textbooks and workbooks are free. There are excursions and lots of regular sporting events held away from Oberwil (skating, swimming, etc), and all of these are free, including transportation. This past year, my son has gone on a highly subsidized ski trip to Davos costing just Fr250! This included transportation, lodging, ski passes & food for 5 days!

Because my son's first language is English, he attends an advance English class near downtown Zug, together with kids from other schools in similar situation. This is also part of Zug's curriculum, as the English lesson in Oberwil is too basic for him. This class is held every other week for an hour.

I'm more than happy to provide additional info.

Good luck!
WOW! That is great! I checked the map and the view from Oberwil is breathtaking. I also checked rentals and I found one apartment only and its not cheap.

The links are super, thank you.

I am extremely impressed about extra curricular activities being free. That is awesome.
I will study the links. I read more and more now, and thanks to all of your help I start to feel better about this move and I am not as frightened any more.

Thank you all.
I still have lots of questions but schools and housing seemed for me to be #1 on the priority list.

Keep in touch.
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