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  #21  
Old 07.12.2012, 16:04
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

Our kids joined after the Easter break - worked out fine. The school administration will contact you soon after you've registered at the Gemeinde.
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  #22  
Old 07.12.2012, 16:30
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

I'm in a somewhat similar situation -- we arrived in Zurich last Tuesday, with my 12-year-old son. Given the proximity to the Christmas break, most people we have talked to have said that waiting to enroll Jacob is probably not a huge problem. We've already put an application in on an apartment, and we're hoping to identify our longer-term living situation before we enroll him. Does anyone have any experience with the school system in Bülach?

In our case, I was working for CS in the States, and they needed me to move. Living apart for seven months, including Christmas and several birthdays, while leaving my wife with three children, two under the age of two -- really wasn't an option.
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  #23  
Old 07.12.2012, 16:38
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Except to most kids it is "repeating", no matter how much you try to sugarcoat it. The grade level is less important in my experience than placing children with the age appropriate peers.
I think it depends very much on parental attitude here. Kids are very perceptive, and if it is explained that they need to spend time and priority learning the local language - and that staying back a year will be the key - most will understand this and make the best of it. It is NOT repeating, as they will be doing a very different programme, and of course, learn the new language as a priority. A lot of research has shown that a positive parental attitude makes a huge difference. If the kids hear the parents saying that it is rubbish, a waste of time, etc- it will sadly rub off on them.
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Old 07.12.2012, 16:57
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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I'm in a somewhat similar situation -- we arrived in Zurich last Tuesday, with my 12-year-old son. Given the proximity to the Christmas break, most people we have talked to have said that waiting to enroll Jacob is probably not a huge problem. We've already put an application in on an apartment, and we're hoping to identify our longer-term living situation before we enroll him. Does anyone have any experience with the school system in Bülach?

In our case, I was working for CS in the States, and they needed me to move. Living apart for seven months, including Christmas and several birthdays, while leaving my wife with three children, two under the age of two -- really wasn't an option.
"Most people you have talked to" - I don't know what this means but for a 12 year old your options are not so simple and you should choose a school first not an apartment. I know, I have worked with families with teens, this is the most difficult age group. There have been some disaster stories here posted by parents of kids this age when trying to find solutions in the local school system.

Unfortunately few people post the success stories, but they exist. I know this for a fact.

I hope you find a good solution.
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  #25  
Old 08.12.2012, 05:54
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

Wow, thank you for the responses so far. As explained in a previous thread, we have no relo help, the kids are 10, 8, 1 and 3 months. Moving at separate times is logistically not feasible, as we sold our home and are staying with friends until our move to Zurich. Thank you for the responses regarding when to enroll the kids. It is basically what I suspected, but good to have confirmation. Just out of curiosity, how do we go about selecting a school first? Are there specific questions we should ask?
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  #26  
Old 08.12.2012, 09:02
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Wow, thank you for the responses so far. As explained in a previous thread, we have no relo help, the kids are 10, 8, 1 and 3 months. Moving at separate times is logistically not feasible, as we sold our home and are staying with friends until our move to Zurich. Thank you for the responses regarding when to enroll the kids. It is basically what I suspected, but good to have confirmation. Just out of curiosity, how do we go about selecting a school first? Are there specific questions we should ask?
Unless you go private, you don't select a school, it is based on where you will live. And finding a place with enough space for 6 people (Swiss, not US standards, ie not a big house most likely) will decide this for you. There aren't a ton of big apartments/houses and some of the rental prices on them are eye watering - which is why we ended up buying, but we plan on staying long term, not something you can do if you are only here for a few years...

And a 1 year old and a 3 month old? You are a busy woman! Hopefully the 10 & 8 year old can help out! Good luck with the move - I think the kids will be fine with local schools and the experience will be wonderful for them!
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Old 08.12.2012, 10:44
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Except to most kids it is "repeating", no matter how much you try to sugarcoat it. The grade level is less important in my experience than placing children with the age appropriate peers.
Rubbish if they only do 3months initially like ours did and the school told them they would assess how it goes and likely they would be placed in the year to do it in full. So they did 1 year plus 3 months of the same year and they were totally fine and ended up with peers virtually the same age since the difference of a full 6 months between northern and southern hemisühere schooling systems kicks in.

Position it right and the kids dont even worry or at least ours didnt worry one bit since the whole experience of another country culture itself means the learning process is vastly altered.

If you arrive and need to do it just position the situation to the kids and they will be fine even if some parenta cant handle the social stigma that they think exists
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Old 08.12.2012, 12:29
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

Younger kids will sail with it, no problem. More difficult for the 10 year old, as selection between academic and vocational streams happen at 11- and a very good level of the local language is essential for passing to the academic side. So for him/her - you'll have to either choose an international private bilingual school - or give plenty of extra support to help him/her acquire as much German as poss as fast as possible- and be prepared perhaps for him/her to repeat a year in order to achieve the necessary level.
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Old 08.12.2012, 13:31
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Younger kids will sail with it, no problem. More difficult for the 10 year old, as selection between academic and vocational streams happen at 11- and a very good level of the local language is essential for passing to the academic side. So for him/her - you'll have to either choose an international private bilingual school - or give plenty of extra support to help him/her acquire as much German as poss as fast as possible- and be prepared perhaps for him/her to repeat a year in order to achieve the necessary level.
]

Thanks, Odile, for clearly stating a point that seems to frequently get mentioned obliquely on these forums.

I'm not sure when French is started in the German-speaking part of the country, but in the Suisse Romande, a 10+ year old also needs to get up to speed in German, as well as in the primary language of instruction, French.
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  #30  
Old 08.12.2012, 14:21
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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]

Thanks, Odile, for clearly stating a point that seems to frequently get mentioned obliquely on these forums.

I'm not sure when French is started in the German-speaking part of the country, but in the Suisse Romande, a 10+ year old also needs to get up to speed in German, as well as in the primary language of instruction, French.
My daughter will start French in 5th grade here in canton St. Gallen
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Old 08.12.2012, 14:39
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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"Most people you have talked to" - I don't know what this means but for a 12 year old your options are not so simple and you should choose a school first not an apartment.
Thank you drmom, I was wondering with the housing market so tight how to go about selecting a school first! We do intend to find a flat first, and yes, it is challenging with four kids. They are prepared to bunk up together.
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Old 08.12.2012, 14:53
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Younger kids will sail with it, no problem. More difficult for the 10 year old, as selection between academic and vocational streams happen at 11- and a very good level of the local language is essential for passing to the academic side. So for him/her - you'll have to either choose an international private bilingual school - or give plenty of extra support to help him/her acquire as much German as poss as fast as possible- and be prepared perhaps for him/her to repeat a year in order to achieve the necessary level.
If it is indeed possible to let our 10 year old stay back to acquire the necessary language skills, that is perfectly fine with all of us! We have mandated that during these first months in Zurich she is to learn German and make friends. As for the stigma of repeating a grade , the older kids have been homeschooled their entire school life so far, excepting for art classes at our local public school. They are used to mixing with different ages, so I am hopeful that will not be a problem.
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Old 08.12.2012, 14:55
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

Great - so i really hope it will all work out for the best.

Why the 'groan' though - if I may ask? I am trying to help here
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Old 08.12.2012, 21:39
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Re: Registering for School Mid Year

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Thank you drmom, I was wondering with the housing market so tight how to go about selecting a school first! We do intend to find a flat first, and yes, it is challenging with four kids. They are prepared to bunk up together.
My quote was from a post replying to Milo - who has a 12 year old.
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