Child care services in Switzerland
Child care centres are managed and funded by communes within each canton. Children are admitted to facilities in their local community. Fees for public centres are charged on a sliding scale according to income. Private child care centres have fixed fees and are generally more expensive. However, waiting lists for public centres are frequently longer. It is advisable to apply for child care as soon as you know where you will be living.
Crèches (day care centres) are generally open Monday to Friday, 07:00-18:30. The age of admittance is from about three months to four years. They usually follow a pre-school curriculum. Some crèches also offer lunch and after school care for older children, up to about age 11.
Child care in Schaffhausen
- Koordinationsstelle Kinder- und Jugendbetreuung (DE) is the coordinating body for childcare in Schaffhausen.
- Zweidihei (DE) is Schaffhausen's regional association for childcare and offers information and advice.
- Lilliput Kinderbetreuung (DE) connects qualified child minders and parents.
- The Swiss Red Cross (DE) offers professional babysitting services.
- Schaffhausen Ferienpass (DE) has details of holiday programmes offered in Schaffhausen.
- globegarden provides bilingual child care in Schaffhausen.
- Child care at the International child care center of the International School of Schaffhausen.
Starting primary school in Schaffhausen
Children in Schaffhausen are entitled to attend kindergarten for two years before beginning primary school. The first year is optional and the second obligatory. Schaffhausen's regional information portal sh.ch (DE) has more information on kindergarten and pre-school (DE) options. Children attend primary school from the age of six. Children attend the school in their neighbourhood. Curriculum in schools includes languages, science, mathematics, art, music and sport.
Public schools in Switzerland often close for the lunch period and children go home to eat. Check with your school to see if they offer lunch for the students. Parents from the school often share care responsibilities so it is always a good idea to speak with other parents at your school.
In Switzerland, children attend the school closest to their home. It is not always a possibility to visit schools before moving to an area, but all schools meet the same high standards. Each public school district has its own website with contact and application information. It is advisable to contact the local school as soon as you have registered at your permanent address.
Attending public school can help children learn the local language and make new friends. Language and integration classes will be provided. The duration of integration classes depends on the child. Once the child has sufficient knowledge of German, they can join the local school. In surrounding villages, integration classes generally take place in the village school itself.
Instruction in English is available at private and international schools. International schools in Switzerland have their own programmes and do not require German knowledge. These are private fee paying schools and must be applied to individually.
International schools in the area:
- ISSH International School of Schaffhausen.
- Find international school listings in the Hello Switzerland Directory.
Learn more about public and international school options in the following articles: