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Old 01.09.2011, 18:54
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Looking for school in Vaud

Hi, looking at a move to switzerland (French speaking part) next year,from uk. Not clear about the swiss system. In state school around the Vaud Canton, what age do they start and what hours.. home for lunch etc. Are all billingual schools privately funded. Any idea how much the fees are in international/billingual/private schools. Any good links would be useful please. Thanks
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Old 02.09.2011, 10:47
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

Please refer to the thread under the sticky about schooling in CH, there is all the references there on the schools, how to find schools, and I just updated the thread with all the private schools in Vaud. This should answer most of your questions, in addition to using the 'search' function.

Bilingual schools are private schools, and yes you pay. You can find bilingual schools, private schools, and international schools through the link on the 'sticky' and would have to refer to each school for their fees and prices. While difficult to generalise and their are exceptions, international schools are generally the most expensive, followed by bilingual/private schools.

For Vaud public schools, it depends on where you live and which schools your child will attend. Basically it is 2 hours home for lunch, and varied hours of start/finish depending on the year/age, although some communes have institued 'block time'. They start school at age 4, this has been optional with obligatory schooling starting at 6, but most children start at 4 anyhow, and with the implementiono of HarmoS in 2012, it will be obligatory from age 4 anyhow in 2012.
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Old 02.09.2011, 17:23
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

For Vaud public schools, it depends on where you live and which schools your child will attend. Basically it is 2 hours home for lunch, and varied hours of start/finish depending on the year/age, although some communes have institued 'block time'. They start school at age 4, this has been optional with obligatory schooling starting at 6, but most children start at 4 anyhow, and with the implementiono of HarmoS in 2012, it will be obligatory from age 4 anyhow in 2012.[/QUOTE]
Thanks, quite reassuring to know that they can go from 4. Do they start reading then, or is it more from 6? The Lunchtime thing is crazy, I hope I can find a school that can have lunch there. I guess women find it hard to go back to work due to this.
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Old 02.09.2011, 17:39
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

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I guess women find it hard to go back to work due to this.
Moving from Norway to Switzerland, it seemed to me that Switzerland wasn't really all that interested in both parents working.

Last edited by Tuborg; 02.09.2011 at 17:40. Reason: Pressed the wrong button!
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Old 05.09.2011, 10:40
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

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Do they start reading then, or is it more from 6?
No, at 6. At 4 and 5, it's more socialisation and not really formal schooling.
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Old 05.09.2011, 15:24
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

And at age 4, the hours will be something like 4 mornings a week (Wednesday off), and perhaps 1 or 2 afternoons, after the 2 hour lunch at home, of course. For example, my local school has enfantine (for 4-6 yr olds) hours of 8.30-11.50 on Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri, then the first years go back on Tues from 2-3.30pm, with the second years going back the other afternoons.

At my school, splitting the group (mixed year class in the mornings) like this means that the teachers do start doing something basic reading and writing with the older ones during the afternoons, but it's very basic and I understand that my school is unusual in doing this.
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Old 06.09.2011, 13:49
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

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And at age 4, the hours will be something like 4 mornings a week (Wednesday off), and perhaps 1 or 2 afternoons, after the 2 hour lunch at home, of course. For example, my local school has enfantine (for 4-6 yr olds) hours of 8.30-11.50 on Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri, then the first years go back on Tues from 2-3.30pm, with the second years going back the other afternoons.

At my school, splitting the group (mixed year class in the mornings) like this means that the teachers do start doing something basic reading and writing with the older ones during the afternoons, but it's very basic and I understand that my school is unusual in doing this.
Interesting thanks... 2 hour lunches are so Alien to me... hmm that would be a real adjustment.
Do children going to school 6 plus have to come home for lunch too... (two hours)?
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Old 06.09.2011, 14:27
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

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Do children going to school 6 plus have to come home for lunch too... (two hours)?
Yes. And just to highlight what Kodokan was saying, the first year, 4 year olds, generally have a slow adapation to school, this varies by the school. Thus instead of 4.5 days of school per week, it generally starts at 2 days and builds up to 4.5 days (lots of variation depending on which school though).
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Old 06.09.2011, 21:22
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

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Interesting thanks... 2 hour lunches are so Alien to me... hmm that would be a real adjustment.
Do children going to school 6 plus have to come home for lunch too... (two hours)?
Yes, the 2 hour lunch thing goes right up through Swiss school, along with the Wed afternoon off thing. From around age 8 or 9, each class will have one or more latchkey kids, going back and getting lunch, then making their way back to school at 2pm. This is considered perfectly fine here, but would probably get you reported in other countries.

And the 2 hour thing is an estimate. My daughter's hours were mostly 11.30-2pm for lunch (one day was 12-2pm), whilst my son had one day a week at 11.15-2pm and another from 12-2.45pm. It's calendar/ teacher/ appui dependent (appui means 'support', and is where the teacher releases most of the kids but keeps back 1-3 for half an hour or so of additional help with bits they're stuck on - this is a marvellous system).
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Old 21.09.2011, 14:00
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Re: Looking for school in Vaud

When we first came it was a big difference in the time spent at school.. as he was 4 in 1st enfantine he only did, monday, tuesday morning, they dont go to school on wednesday, thursday was morning and afternoon and friday just the afternoon... now he is 2nd enfantine he does all the afternoons except thursday.. and school still closed on wednesdays. The lunches are roughly 2 hours, he is back at 12.10(free bus) and goes back to school on bus at 1.50. There is a lunch facility for the days when he had full days but as he was finding the french hard i felt he needs the break to come home and relax before going back. You can also look for a maman de jour to care for your child during the lunch break my neighbour does this with her children. The lady collects from the bus stop and brings back after lunch.
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