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Old 03.06.2011, 12:28
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

I don't know many kids in primary school who go off to the pool etc in their lunch-break - I mean it sounds nice and maybe for older teens is great, but at that age they're more independent and able to be left for longer anyway.

It's the age 7 -11 group I'm mainly thinking about. Kids of this age should not be left alone for extended periods of time, day in day out winter, spring, summer and fall as a matter of course. We're living in different times now - times where left the their own devices many kids spend their time on the internet, on I-phones, listening to and reading who knows what and playing war games. And I'm right in the middle of this as a parent of a nearly 10 year old boy, I see what's happening.

Even back when I was growing up during the 70's when these things weren't around and the temptation wasn't there - we'd spend hours playing other things.

Of course kids still play outside now - my son is out playing football right now - he went out on his own to play tennis with a friend at a nearby club at 9am this morning. It's important kids have the time and are able to do things like this - but in a particular age group it's important that they do these things on a "long leash" so to speak. In other words that a parent or responsible adult knows where they are, what they are doing and is around for them. Bored, kids quickly descend into mischief and very often (with the boys) head straight for gaming/internet to pass time.

With a day school structure there wouldn't be a 2 hour lunch break. More like an hour. Kids would eat with their friends then afterwards they go outside and play, football, in the playground etc. Definitely NOT a situation of restricted freedom - especially as the whole idea of day school is that kids still would have the choice and if they wanted could go home for lunch.

School would start at 9.00 and end at 15.45 including the lunchbreak. Still would leave plenty of time for "free activities" after 16.00. So I still don't see the problem!
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  #102  
Old 03.06.2011, 12:44
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

I think when women will be allowed to make a bunch of cash, they will matter. The shop hours will be arranged to suit a family with both employed partners, the school hours will be arranged to suit it, too, the voting, thankgod, caught up.
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  #103  
Old 03.06.2011, 14:25
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

Hi Musicchick - I just hope when our kids are grown up, these changes have been made. In the meantime - it takes a lot of work, with some real good luck thrown in, to have a fulfilling career and be a mum to school aged kids (aged 6+) here in CH. It seems we've both been fortunate (if I read between the lines from your posts too) but not all women are so fortunate.

It's not the schools fault specifically - of course the issue lies in wider society. It might take another generation but I'm convinced one day, Tageschule will be introduced in Switzerland and only then can we start to even address the issue of pay inequality.
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  #104  
Old 03.06.2011, 14:36
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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It's not the schools fault specifically - of course the issue lies in wider society. It might take another generation but I'm convinced one day, Tageschule will be introduced in Switzerland and only then can we start to even address the issue of pay inequality.
In the canton of Bern Tagesschulen exist.

There are different modules: Before school starts, at noon, after school, Wednesdays etc. By law, if there is a demand for at least 10 pupils for one of the modules, the Gemeinde has to offer it.
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  #105  
Old 03.06.2011, 14:47
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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Hi Musicchick - I just hope when our kids are grown up, these changes have been made. In the meantime - it takes a lot of work, with some real good luck thrown in, to have a fulfilling career and be a mum to school aged kids (aged 6+) here in CH. It seems we've both been fortunate (if I read between the lines from your posts too) but not all women are so fortunate.

It's not the schools fault specifically - of course the issue lies in wider society. It might take another generation but I'm convinced one day, Tageschule will be introduced in Switzerland and only then can we start to even address the issue of pay inequality.
I know. I also realize you can have it all, life here is much better in some aspect because of the slow pace, the pushed part time work, for example in my opinion somewhat contributes to this. And in a place where even the choice of part time employment is rather limited. The short shop hours, too, so the women shop and cook when kids are at school and keep them at breaks. I also think in a sexist way, based on my experience, chicks are flexible and if there is somebody to deal with this stuff flexibly, it's chicks. It wasn't easy for me, at all, but the support I had and asked for and the career measures I took way before (coming also from a place that traditionally didn't used to promote much female career until 20yrs ago), helped the entire family. I have a daughter, and if she grows up here, instead of me telling her she, as a woman in a modern society, will be taken everywhere equally, I will actually push her for her own career and safety network, in case she runs into problems in the equality dept.
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  #106  
Old 03.06.2011, 15:03
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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This is not realistic. HERE, a full-day school would in reality mean a day in school from 8.30 until 17.30
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In France, it's 8:00 to 17:00 (minor variations) and believe me, nobody wants that.
In order to have 8:00 to 15:00 (the more realistic option in CH), one would have to give up the free wednesday afternoon. Do people reallywant that to be asked to the voters in a referendum? And one would still have students waiting two hours for theirs parents to get back from work.

My personal view: don't underestimate the force of habit. All countries where I have taught find their own school day rythm the best. They all have good reasons for that.
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  #107  
Old 03.06.2011, 15:29
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

Hope you don't take this the wrong way but why don't you find a job? There are quite a lot of IT jobs around and it is possible to work out the childcare.

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That's awesome, really, (and I'm jealous truth be told) but....my skills are not being a mum, but in a specialised IT field. I took 18 months off after I had my child and, while I don't regret it, it was the hardest job I ever had. I'm just not socially that great, even in my own culture, much less one where I'm the extreme outsider. I'm also used to making my own money, owning my own home and keeping my own bank account....so this whole thing of relying on my husband in a country that is in the 1950s where women's rights are concerned more or less doesn't give me a lot of comfort. And...with the IT field, it's not as though you can take years off and not suffer from a stale CV. Switzerland is awesome if you want to be a SAHM...not so much if you don't.
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  #108  
Old 03.06.2011, 15:59
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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In France, it's 8:00 to 17:00 (minor variations) and believe me, nobody wants that.
In order to have 8:00 to 15:00 (the more realistic option in CH), one would have to give up the free wednesday afternoon. Do people reallywant that to be asked to the voters in a referendum? And one would still have students waiting two hours for theirs parents to get back from work.

My personal view: don't underestimate the force of habit. All countries where I have taught find their own school day rythm the best. They all have good reasons for that.



Give up the Wednesday free afternoon - most people I know look for ways to fill that afternoon for their children.

And having to organise 2 hours each day for children is very different from having to organse 6 hours 3 x a week and 2 hours lunch + 2 hours after school the other 2 days. Big difference - huge difference.

Just because something is habit and people are used to it doesn't necessarily mean that it is fair or effective. There is a segment of the population who are really disadvantaged by this habit - women who wish to pursue a career and have children (and don't have family willing and/or able to step in as childminders nearby)

So far the reasons I've heard to maintain this structure haven't been too convincing. "students wouldn't be able to go to the pool and do what they want over lunch" "students would feel like their freedom has been taken away from them" "school days would be too long" "it's a habit and just works this way here"

The real reasons might read more like:

"The government don't believe it worthwhile investing the money in lunch provision at schools"

"Creating a situation where women are more or less forced to quit their jobs provides a huge amount of unpaid labour/service in relation to the above"

"Creating the above situation also keeps the unemployment figures down"

"There is an element/belief held that a women's place is in the home - it isn't outwardly spoken but the school hours, shop hours, laundry days etc are all elements of society that quite clearly restrict the time a parent (usually a women) has to do anything else"

The above reasons make suggestions like "try getting a job" pretty difficult to people like the original poster. If the OP has a child under 12. Sure, they might be able to get a job part time working in Migros - but this brings us right back to the point. She is an educated, professional women, who probably spent years gaining her qualifications, working in her field and enjoying the many things that go along with that.

Working in such fields it's very difficult to say to your employer. "Well sorry, I'll be able to come in between 8 and 11.30 Monday to Friday and I'll be able to come in from 14.00 - 15.30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays" Let's say the employer has 2 other candidates - both equally well qualified and experienced, but both men or women without children who say, yes, I'm available 100% - WHO is the employer going to choose?

It IS possible to work out the childcare - but it's difficult and it's expensive and you need the childcare for so much longer with these school hours than you would with day school structures.
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  #109  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:08
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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It IS possible to work out the childcare
Don't shoot the messenger... I just said that people like it how it is, even if they are wrong by your standards and even if they are in deed wrong after a careful reaonable and well thought through argument. Since when do people decide with reasonned arguments?
Fighting the present situation with objective scientifical logical arguments is pointless, even if you can be right that way.

One thing you did not understand: it is BECAUSE Basel Stadt is left that they do not want allday school. That makes perfect political sense in Basel and anywhere else in Switzerland and Germany. I must admit that it does not necesserely make sense anywhere else.
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  #110  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:13
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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Don't shoot the messenger... I just said that people like it how it is, even if they are wrong by your standards and even if they are in deed wrong after a careful reaonable and well thought through argument. Since when do people decide with reasonned arguments?
Fighting the present situation with objective scientifical logical arguments is pointless, even if you can be right that way.

One thing you did not understand: it is BECAUSE Basel Stadt is left that they do not want allday school. That makes perfect political sense in Basel and anywhere else in Switzerland and Germany. I must admit that it does not necesserely make sense anywhere else.

Hi Faltrad - I'm not having a go at you, honestly. I was on the debate club in Uni and this is a subject very close to my heart, hence my impassioned response.

I'm genuinely curious to know the reasons why people voted against this measure in Basel. You mentioned that the left voted against it. Traditionally at least where I'm from, the left always support policies to give women and minorities opportunities in society. What is the thinking here that really makes people (who are more to the left) go out and vote against such a proposal?

By the way - I'm not at all anti-Swiss. I really love living here and many many things about life here. This is just one area I haven't been able to understand.......(I'm English)
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  #111  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:26
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

Sorry Stephanie, I normally agree with what you write but stating what you do below is really counter productive. There are many women on this forum who are both mothers & employed doing jobs/careers that they spent a long time gaining the qualifications and or working their buts off to get where they are. I am not saying it is easy but it is entirely possible to have children & a meaningful career in Switzerland. Saying that women are limited to part time jobs in Migors is very far from the truth.

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The above reasons make suggestions like "try getting a job" pretty difficult to people like the original poster. If the OP has a child under 12. Sure, they might be able to get a job part time working in Migros - but this brings us right back to the point. She is an educated, professional women, who probably spent years gaining her qualifications, working in her field and enjoying the many things that go along with that.
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  #112  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:32
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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Traditionally at least where I'm from, the left always support policies to give women and minorities opportunities in society.
Short version (I am aware of the short cuts): For the left, staying long hours in school does not help but hinders child development and learning. The main idea being that shorter academic time is better used when connected to hours of child and youth personal development rather than just long hours of forcing academic content into heads the whole day.
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Old 03.06.2011, 16:35
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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Sorry Stephanie, I normally agree with what you write but stating what you do below is really counter productive. There are many women on this forum who are both mothers & employed doing jobs/careers that they spent a long time gaining the qualifications and or working their buts off to get where they are. I am not saying it is easy but it is entirely possible to have children & a meaningful career in Switzerland. Saying that women are limited to part time jobs in Migors is very far from the truth.
Hi Lou,

I don't disagree with you. I'm one of the women you speak about, it can be done, absolutely. Perhaps my comment about Migros was a bit provocative (and there's nothing wrong with working in Migros either)

The point I was trying to make is it's possible - but generally pretty challenging to organize. I know it's like that in other countries too. The thing is the more standardized and longer the school hours (within in reason) the easier it would be for many working women. And I was really referring to the bigger picture/shape of society and trying to understand why people and in particular people with liberal tendencies find value in maintaining that.

Sorry if I've offended anyone.
I'll take my "debating" hat off now.
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  #114  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:40
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

I was far from offended. I read your post differently than your explanation . I just did not want any women to read what you wrote & think that it cannot be done.

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Hi Lou,

I don't disagree with you. I'm one of the women you speak about, it can be done, absolutely. Perhaps my comment about Migros was a bit provocative (and there's nothing wrong with working in Migros either)

The point I was trying to make is it's possible - but generally pretty challenging to organize. I know it's like that in other countries too. The thing is the more standardized and longer the school hours (within in reason) the easier it would be for many working women. And I was really referring to the bigger picture/shape of society and trying to understand why people and in particular people with liberal tendencies find value in maintaining that.

Sorry if I've offended anyone.
I'll take my "debating" hat off now.
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  #115  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:41
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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Short version (I am aware of the short cuts): For the left, staying long hours in school does not help but hinders child development and learning. The main idea being that shorter academic time is better used when connected to hours of child and youth personal development rather than just long hours of forcing academic content into heads the whole day.
Thank you Faltrad - this looks like an interesting reason/theory. It would be interesting to see if there were any on-going research possibly cross-cultural going on in this area. It'd also be an interesting area of research to look at girls career aspirations in Germany and Switzerland and see if they are different to girls in other countries where the situation is slightly different.
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Old 03.06.2011, 16:45
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

The Ganztagsschule debate is very hot in Germany at the moment. The Greens don't want it, the Blacks demand it and the Reds don't know. Last time the Reds knew something is so long ago, it's hard to remember (but that's another debate). And you have differences depending the Land.

In Basel, just don't even mention Ganztagsschule, just stay zen and take it like it comes... there is always some research somewhere that says what you want to hear, so I wouldn't make that a new religion either.
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Old 03.06.2011, 16:50
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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The Ganztagsschule debate is very hot in Germany at the moment. The Greens don't want it, the Blacks demand it and the Reds don't know. Last time the Reds knew something is so long ago, it's hard to remember (but that's another debate). And you have differences depending the Land.

In Basel, just don't even mention Ganztagsschule, just stay zen and take it like it comes... there is always some research somewhere that says what you want to hear, so I wouldn't make that a new religion either.

I have a very good Swiss girlfriend who moved to Berlin 2 years ago with her family. Her daughter is now 8 and son 14. In Berlin they have the whole day school - it seems to be the norm there. I suppose it depends on which part of Germany you're in.

Hear what you're saying about research, but I think informed and rigorous debate is quite important in these matters, when something matters to someone and also impacts a large section of society......but that might also be my own background speaking........
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  #118  
Old 03.06.2011, 16:53
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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The Ganztagsschule debate is very hot in Germany at the moment. The Greens don't want it, the Blacks demand it and the Reds don't know. Last time the Reds knew something is so long ago, it's hard to remember (but that's another debate). And you have differences depending the Land.

In Basel, just don't even mention Ganztagsschule, just stay zen and take it like it comes... there is always some research somewhere that says what you want to hear, so I wouldn't make that a new religion either.
what are the main arguments for and against? could it not simply be a choice whether the parent leaves child for the full day or not?
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Old 03.06.2011, 17:59
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

I just got back from spinning and this is what they had in the machine I was spinning on, made me laugh...

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Old 04.06.2011, 01:42
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Re: Swiss women earn 41 percent less than men

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hm no I don't understand really. If you have to fit x hours of classes into a school day, then surely the schoolday would be 1 hour shorter of you only had 1 hour of lunch instead of 2?
You are right mathematically, but you are wrong in regard to Swiss mentality

And again, one hour lunch means no chance to go home, no chance to do something privately either at home or outside.
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