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Old 05.12.2010, 00:08
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Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

Hello,
I am new to the forum however I've spent some time reading the posts and found them very informative. So first I want to say Hi and thank all the guys who spend their time answering others.

And I also have a question and as I could not find the answer so far, I beg for your input.

OK, my situation: originally from Russia, lived in US, now permanently live in Montreal. Have a wife and a kid of 9 years. The kid is in school for "gifted in science" kids, whatever it means.

Have got a couple of offers and am considering moving to french part of Switzerland, most likely btw Rolle and Vevey. Need to bring the family and to find the school for my kid.

Now, that somehow turned to be a problem. First, there is no "special" schools in Switzerland. Ok, pas mal, all the schools are good. I do not have any reason not to believe it. Private schools (from what I read on the forum) do not provide any "additional" education, just take better care of the kids whose parents cannot spend time with them ;-))

So far so good. Mais my cousin, who was almost in the same situation as I am now two years ago, came then to Lausanne and found a place in Blecherette (sp?). Within a month his 2 kids knew all various swearing nuances of m*..de in French... He ran away from there, got into the most expensive rental in Friburg (for the same m2) and now is happy about the public school and the kids there (his and others).

I am not a snob, I never counted myself as being one, after seeing all these nouveaux riches in Moscow. Yet I do want to find a place where kids will have the same "level" (or better) than us, and we do not swear at home or ever in any language (you can count me as an unusual Russian. Just out of the country for more than 10 years :-))

In US it was different - just buy a house (at a premium) at the district of the best charter school. In Canada -- your kid have to pass tons of exams and you have to go through several rounds of asking and demanding admission, but it is clear what is good and what is not, and the selected kids end up relatively at the same level, strength and "social background" so to speak.

My question: it seems that in Switzerland the schools are all good, but the pupils in them are yet different. How to find places and schools where kids do not swear (at least much) and have parents who have some spare cash and spend it on books? And where such kids/parents will be a mojority rather than a minority? Or a private school is the only option, just because it already selected parents who can pay?

Thanks in advance and sorry for such a long first post.
Pete
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Old 05.12.2010, 00:29
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

Welcome to the forum. Which part of Malaysia are you located ?
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Old 05.12.2010, 02:29
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

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Welcome to the forum. Which part of Malaysia are you located ?
Montreal?

(message too short).
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Old 05.12.2010, 02:31
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

Swearing is part of life. It's the first thing you learn in any language.

Your children need to understand the difference between the swear words, and using them.
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Old 05.12.2010, 02:34
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

No need to become a snob , matter of personal choice.
Go for one of the villages up the hills or along the lake.
Avoid the big(ger) cities and you'll be fine.
For example, if in Vevey, consider living in St Legier or La Tour de Peilz.
It works fine for us. We don't agree with the principle of private schools so our daughter goes to the local schools and the ones we have used have been good.
Also to consider: friends to socialise with after school, no need to drive them back and forth, children here walk to school.
Good luck with the move.
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Old 05.12.2010, 02:57
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

that's rubbish. we moved here from ny. my son was 'advanced' in many areas, math, science,etc.9 years old is a bit early to determine how far a strength in science at that age will go and if other areas will be stronger/more interesting, etc.
like you, i was worried about what he would learn/wouldn't learn, etc. we moved to lausanne- not all that far from blecherette, actually, on the same bus line, but my son had a completely different experience. he learned french very quickly, now is learning german without a problem and getting used to the life of a child here. so your son is advanced in science, that's great, but he may have a lot to learn in other areas and either way, if you continue to keep him curious he'll be fine.

in the u.s, canada, where ever, your child is going to see kids that curse or misbehave or whatever. putting him in a small village won't change that- only what he learns at home in terms of behavior and how to enjoy himself will.
in private schools your son may see far worse or he may not, it's the luck of the draw and how you teach him at home that will determine what kind of kids/behavior he is drawn to and what he is not...
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Old 05.12.2010, 05:45
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

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Welcome to the forum. Which part of Malaysia are you located ?
Good job, you solved the mystery, durrr!! How could the forum ever afford to lose such a tenacious mod.

PeterAndWolf, I have indirect experience with all three (US, CAN, CHF) school systems, and in laymans (lazymans) terms I can assure you that the Swiss system of education is the superior of the three (opinion, not fact).
In terms of the early grades, they tend to hire young, passionate teachers who really seem to care about their students - quite a few of my friends teach children here, and they all are very driven (Kim Jong Il's successor cant be wrong!)
In high school, the big difference with the North American system is that at the age of 16, youths are given the choice to either A) continue their schooling for a few more years in preparation for university or B) enter into the apprenticeship of their choice, which is normally chosen after a career aptitude test... As someone who recieved their eduation in Canada, I can tell you this is really a brilliant notion (they may have it elsewhere, I dont know, I'm just telling you my opinion based on personal experience) . This way, by the age of 19, they will have either completed an apprenticeship and are well prepared for a specialists career in anything from Parfumier to Chef, or they are beginning a degree from one of Switzerlands renowned universities.
I should also remind you of the obvious differences in price. In Canada, I could attend, for example, a culinary school like Le Cordon Bleu and pay almost 30,000 for a couple years of study and a piece of paper. In Switzerland, my girlfriend's sister is finishing up her medical school to be a doctor, and is paying roughly 600$ per semester. FOR MEDICAL SCHOOL. Starting wage at 7000 CHF per month.
There is nothing snobbish about wanting to do good for your kids, dude.
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Old 05.12.2010, 05:58
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

I don't know but I have always looked at it from the point of view that the following components are responsible for a kid's education:
1. School teachers: teach the kid analytical thinking, basic skills and facts.
2. Class mates/peers: teach the kid cultural context, swearing, fitting in, etc.
3. Parents: teach the kid the ethic and moral frameworks to utilise all the above knowledge in.

Bottom line....kids are always going to learn to swear. The better thier moral and ethical education is the more they will understand what context they can swear in.
From the Swiss education point of view, I would imagine that the private schooling here is very good as is the public education. I would be very supprised to find out that there is no difference between the two.

Best of luck with your move.
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Old 05.12.2010, 09:16
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

become a snob?

Just do what you say you need to do in Montreal. Live in a very expensive neighborhood.
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Old 05.12.2010, 09:34
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

Something tells me no amount of swear words would actually be a safe indicator of kid's education, background, etc..Where did this notion come from? If you don't swear ar home (which I completely agree with) continue with this rule, kids are so capable to not swear at home but speak dirty everywhere else without you knowing. But to shelter your child from what is normally so pervasive within every normal group of kids...dunno.

If you want a good school in the neighborhood, pm me, it's very difficult, costs some but academically, kids are driven, pushed hard and end up not only speaking languages but excell in other subject, beyond what is expected in public schooling and their ways are pretty set for local and foreign universities.

Good luck and keep looking. I agree that moving countries and worrying about kid's education isn't an easy thing on people's minds.
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Old 05.12.2010, 09:47
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

My kids are all in local Swiss schools. I've not noticed that they have particularly foul mouths.

I'm afraid, however, you're already a snob, if you think that sending your children to a private school is snobbish. And rather naive if you think they won't learn to swear there. At my private school, we probably learned more about social interaction, and treating people with respect (how much stuck though?) than the local comprehensive - but we certainly were swearing as much as the local kids.
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Old 05.12.2010, 10:17
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Re: Need to become a snob for the sake of my kid?

I understand where you're coming from. I grew up in a poor area, and my primary and high school were mixed as to the type of kids there. My parents, while poor, always demanded good behaviour and respect from us. And always tried to teach us good morals.

When I say my high school was mixed, well we had herion pushers as well as high achievers (one kid got the highest score in the state for his final year). I would be concerned about sending my kids to such a school. While I made it to Uni, I was 1 of only 10 or so who did. And only 66 finished high school out of a starting group of around 210. Yes, this was quite a while ago (I'm not going to admit to my age), but the quality of the school made a difference.

I think it does also make a difference in primary school, although less so. Still, my sister got in the "wrong" crowd and was picked up for playing truant and shop lifting at 10. She dropped out of school at 15, and obviously regrets it now. In no way did my parents condone or accept this behaviour.

In addition, kids can be really cruel. I remember being teased for being one of the smart kids (and not the smartest) in primary school. Some kids don't cope with that and play dumb, or lose interest in school.

While I agree swearing is not an indicator of a good school, I think the level of respect that kids show to their parents and teachers is. The fact that kids think swearing at home is ok suggests that they and their peers have less respect. Yes, they'll learn swearing in every school, but at the better schools the kids and teachers have a higher expectation as to appropriate behaviour.

In my opinion, my experience was much more extreme than you would find here. The schools here generally are stricter and do seem to expect better behaviour. But I do also hear stories of some local schools being very good and some not so good. It gather it depends partly on the quality of the teachers, and partly on the parents here. Best I can say is to visit the schools in the areas you want to live, talk to the teachers and see if they seem interested and energized. And watch the kids as they leave school to walk home - how do they behave? It wont set your mind completely at ease, but should give you some idea.

I also agree that while your son may go backwards in the academics/sciences, he will have a big learning curve in language. Once he's achieved proficiency in the language you could then decide if you're happy with the school, and move if not. By that stage you should also have a better idea of the surrounding schools. (Big thing to move, but it is an option.)

Good luck.
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