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Old 23.06.2012, 21:06
Aoi Aoi is offline
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State Schools in Geneva Questions Questions Questions! NEED advice!

Hi Everyone,

A little about us:
Husband UK citizen. I'm US citizen. We both lived abroad in Japan for a few years. Have a 4 1/2 year old. Should be moving to Geneva by end of this year if not before.

I think the quality of the state schools in Geneva is undeniable. From what I've heard the education quality is high, the teachers motivated, it's FREE, my child will become fluent in French, and be immersed in the culture.

These are all pluses in my eyes.


My few reservations/ questions are:

1) I've heard some say that the state schools in Geneva, while excellent, are rule oriented, and the education is assembly-line, and test oriented'.

While i myself and all for a solid foundation and aclemating children to the reality of tests for University, I like a school to implement a more holistic approach to education.

So far the International School in Geneva allegedly implements the exact type of learning I am after:

"The programme is built on the promotion of intercultural awareness, communication and holistic learning through an integrated approach to teaching and learning provided by learning contexts, known as “Areas of Interaction”. We aim to teach the child to become an independent life-long learner through the “approaches to learning” (learning how to learn) that provide students with transferable skills."

But I have not yet researched what kind of educational model the state schools implement.

Could anyone tell me if they have this approach? Or is it more the teachers lectures to children model with little interaction (something i saw in Japan while working there)?

2) This is not a [I]huge deal breaking issue, but is it hard having your child go to school in French, if neither parent can speak French (husband is only functional French)? I worry I won't know what is happening at her school, won't be able to help her with her homework, read the school calendar etc.

I will be taking up French upon arriving, but obviously I won't be fluent by the time she starts school

3) Lastly, because the state school is in the very international city of Geneva, do the state schools reflect this?

Are there many kids from all over in the schools whose parents have decided to enroll them in the state schools?

I know it wouldn't be the multicultural education of an International School, but would you say it's still quite multicultural in the state schools in the center of Geneva because of their location?

Thank you everyone for reading this and i look forward to any advice you can give!

I also have two other threads, one of issues that non-french speaking parents face with kids in french speaking schools, and one on International schools. So if you have something really specific you'd like to add to those topics you can add it there if you'd like.

Thanks again!
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