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Forums in Geneva > Geneva > Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
 
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Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?

Howdy all,


A friend of mine is relocating to Geneva with his wife and 2 year old child in September.


Yesterday he met with some relocation agencies to check about finding a spot for his son at a creche / Kindergarten in Geneva.


The info he received is that:


1. There's a super long waiting list for most public creches in Geneva
2. There are no private creches in Geneva
3. You can only sign up for a creche (or a waiting list) after you arrive in GVA and move into an apartment.
4. If only 1 of the parents works, that automatically puts you at the bottom of the waiting list


If all of the above is correct, then he'll basically have to move his family to Geneva withouf knowing if/when his son will be able to start attending a creche.


Is this correct?  Are there any other solutions, or is it really so difficult?


Thanks for any input & advice.


Oded


 


 

The text you are quoting:

Howdy all,


A friend of mine is relocating to Geneva with his wife and 2 year old child in September.


Yesterday he met with some relocation agencies to check about finding a spot for his son at a creche / Kindergarten in Geneva.


The info he received is that:


1. There's a super long waiting list for most public creches in Geneva
2. There are no private creches in Geneva
3. You can only sign up for a creche (or a waiting list) after you arrive in GVA and move into an apartment.
4. If only 1 of the parents works, that automatically puts you at the bottom of the waiting list


If all of the above is correct, then he'll basically have to move his family to Geneva withouf knowing if/when his son will be able to start attending a creche.


Is this correct?  Are there any other solutions, or is it really so difficult?


Thanks for any input & advice.


Oded


 


 


SiteAdmin OdedJun 21, 2012 @ 01:51
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 1

Hi Oded


Points 1 and 3 and 4 are correct.


1- yes waiting lists are a year plus.


3- Public creche lists are based on the commune where you live, so until they have an address and a "permit" with the address on it...no chance.


4- true...since the archaic Swiss views are that the woman shoudl look after the kid(s) if the husband is working. There are numerous Home DADs here where the wife works are the UN or so and the husband is a trailing spouse.


As to point 2....  they should research the Maman du jour option (but thats also pretty tough waiting lists)...or think of a nanny/au pair option, if the spouse who is not working wants time off from the little one. 


Kindergarten from age 4 have long lists too...even the private ones. So when they get here I would advise choosing a suitable one and getting their name on a list asap.

The text you are quoting:

Hi Oded


Points 1 and 3 and 4 are correct.


1- yes waiting lists are a year plus.


3- Public creche lists are based on the commune where you live, so until they have an address and a "permit" with the address on it...no chance.


4- true...since the archaic Swiss views are that the woman shoudl look after the kid(s) if the husband is working. There are numerous Home DADs here where the wife works are the UN or so and the husband is a trailing spouse.


As to point 2....  they should research the Maman du jour option (but thats also pretty tough waiting lists)...or think of a nanny/au pair option, if the spouse who is not working wants time off from the little one. 


Kindergarten from age 4 have long lists too...even the private ones. So when they get here I would advise choosing a suitable one and getting their name on a list asap.


Charlie, Jun 21, 2012 @ 07:33
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 2

Good morning Charlie and thanks for the detailed reply.


Sounds like a pretty impossible situation and a serious obstacle to families moving here.


I read on a different thread that opening a private creche is almost impossible in GVA, which probably explains part of the prob.


When my friend told me about this I assumed he was wrong / exagerating but it looks like his info was correct.


I'll let him know.  I don't think his wife will be too happy about it...


Thanks again,


Oded

The text you are quoting:

Good morning Charlie and thanks for the detailed reply.


Sounds like a pretty impossible situation and a serious obstacle to families moving here.


I read on a different thread that opening a private creche is almost impossible in GVA, which probably explains part of the prob.


When my friend told me about this I assumed he was wrong / exagerating but it looks like his info was correct.


I'll let him know.  I don't think his wife will be too happy about it...


Thanks again,


Oded


SiteAdmin Oded, Jun 21, 2012 @ 09:10
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 3

Shaun - thanks a lot for the info.


My friend's work will be in Geneva so this is where he was hoping to live, but if the creche situation is so difficult I assume he will live wherever he can find a spot for his kid.


What bothers me is that this seems to be a chicken & egg type of thing.


You can't sign up for a creche until you move into an apartment, but you don't want to sign an apartment lease until you know your kid will be able to go to the neighborhood creche.


Harsh...


Oded

The text you are quoting:

Shaun - thanks a lot for the info.


My friend's work will be in Geneva so this is where he was hoping to live, but if the creche situation is so difficult I assume he will live wherever he can find a spot for his kid.


What bothers me is that this seems to be a chicken & egg type of thing.


You can't sign up for a creche until you move into an apartment, but you don't want to sign an apartment lease until you know your kid will be able to go to the neighborhood creche.


Harsh...


Oded


SiteAdmin Oded, Jun 21, 2012 @ 12:45
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 4

Hi Oded,


As indicated:


1. There's a super long waiting list for most public creches in Geneva


TRUE.    Working women sign up for both public & private creche spots the minute they find out they are pregnant.  



2. There are no private creches in Geneva


FALSE.   There are some in Canton Geneva.  More in Canton Vaud.  There is a new one in Meyrin (GE) that is English-French or Swedish-French at the Swedish School of Geneva (www.svenskaskolan.ch).  There is ECOLINT at Nations.  Many private creches are attached to preschools.   2 year olds can go to a JARDIN D'ENFANTS a few times per week or full time.   There are places.   Some international employers pay the fees.



3. You can only sign up for a creche (or a waiting list) after you arrive in GVA and move into an apartment.


Not necessarily true.   This is not written policy, it's what is generally practiced.  If you have an idea of which area you are moving to and how many hours childcare you want/need, if you write and call frequently and are nice, you are "heard" and so when you sign up officially, you are "higher" on the list.



4. If only 1 of the parents works, that automatically puts you at the bottom of the waiting list


TRUE, at least for FULL TIME placements.   Once again if you call regularly and are friendly, when casual places come free (e.g. one morning or one afternoon per week), you will be remembered and potentially offerred a place.   And for most families where one parent is at home, the child attends a Jardin d'Enfants or Creche part time and then does other activities on other days.


For the "other activities", there are TONNES of things for under 5s and their parents to do in Geneva and Vaud.  Playball, Gymboree, Mubabil, BabyGym.  


Parents and parents-to-be can join the expat networks to help them meet other parents which thus helps with integration.   Networks include:


- American International Women's Club (Eaux Vives)


- Bumpsnbubs.com (online network in Geneva)


- moms-in.vaud.com (online and face-to-face community of parents in Eastern GVA, Western Vaud & Pays de Gex).


Too few relocation agents know about the "parenting communities", but they are ESSENTIAL for keeping the "trailing spouse/parent" happy (and thus the working parent happy and productive too).


-Michelle


 


 


 

The text you are quoting:

Hi Oded,


As indicated:


1. There's a super long waiting list for most public creches in Geneva


TRUE.    Working women sign up for both public & private creche spots the minute they find out they are pregnant.  



2. There are no private creches in Geneva


FALSE.   There are some in Canton Geneva.  More in Canton Vaud.  There is a new one in Meyrin (GE) that is English-French or Swedish-French at the Swedish School of Geneva (www.svenskaskolan.ch).  There is ECOLINT at Nations.  Many private creches are attached to preschools.   2 year olds can go to a JARDIN D'ENFANTS a few times per week or full time.   There are places.   Some international employers pay the fees.



3. You can only sign up for a creche (or a waiting list) after you arrive in GVA and move into an apartment.


Not necessarily true.   This is not written policy, it's what is generally practiced.  If you have an idea of which area you are moving to and how many hours childcare you want/need, if you write and call frequently and are nice, you are "heard" and so when you sign up officially, you are "higher" on the list.



4. If only 1 of the parents works, that automatically puts you at the bottom of the waiting list


TRUE, at least for FULL TIME placements.   Once again if you call regularly and are friendly, when casual places come free (e.g. one morning or one afternoon per week), you will be remembered and potentially offerred a place.   And for most families where one parent is at home, the child attends a Jardin d'Enfants or Creche part time and then does other activities on other days.


For the "other activities", there are TONNES of things for under 5s and their parents to do in Geneva and Vaud.  Playball, Gymboree, Mubabil, BabyGym.  


Parents and parents-to-be can join the expat networks to help them meet other parents which thus helps with integration.   Networks include:


- American International Women's Club (Eaux Vives)


- Bumpsnbubs.com (online network in Geneva)


- moms-in.vaud.com (online and face-to-face community of parents in Eastern GVA, Western Vaud & Pays de Gex).


Too few relocation agents know about the "parenting communities", but they are ESSENTIAL for keeping the "trailing spouse/parent" happy (and thus the working parent happy and productive too).


-Michelle


 


 


 


Michelle W, Jun 21, 2012 @ 12:51
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 5

I forgot to say, for (3) and (4) this is in relation to PUBLIC spots, for private the working situation is not relevant and where you live is not relevant either, you sign up you get a spot or get put on the waiting list in order of sign ups.

The text you are quoting:

I forgot to say, for (3) and (4) this is in relation to PUBLIC spots, for private the working situation is not relevant and where you live is not relevant either, you sign up you get a spot or get put on the waiting list in order of sign ups.


Michelle W, Jun 21, 2012 @ 13:07
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 6

@Shaun - thanks again - I'll forward the links & suggestions to my friend.


@Michele - thanks for the info.


I'm a bit confused regarding the waiting list though.


Since the creches start on a certain date (end Aug-beg Sept I assume) then isn't it a case of either you get in for this year or you don't?


It's not like you're going to get a call in a few weeks that a spot has opened up is it?


Oded

The text you are quoting:

@Shaun - thanks again - I'll forward the links & suggestions to my friend.


@Michele - thanks for the info.


I'm a bit confused regarding the waiting list though.


Since the creches start on a certain date (end Aug-beg Sept I assume) then isn't it a case of either you get in for this year or you don't?


It's not like you're going to get a call in a few weeks that a spot has opened up is it?


Oded


SiteAdmin Oded, Jun 21, 2012 @ 13:23
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 7

Hi Oded,


Creches don't really have a calendar year.   They are closed for several weeks in the summer, at Christmas, Easter, etc.   Spaces open up as spaces come free, which can happen for many reasons in Geneva, and any time of year.   Some reasons why places come open:


- Family relocated so kids pulled out of childcare
- Younger sibling comes along so the mother now home so takes her older child out of full-time care, freeing up part-time space on the other days
- Child offered a place in a private preschool, freeing up space
- Makes a friend so families hire a shared nanny and leave public system
- etc.

Once you are in part-time, getting more days also easier.


Have your friend's spouse join Moms-in-Vaud so she can get a head start asking questions before she arrives.   A copy of the know-it-all passport is also a good idea (www.knowitall.ch).


-Michelle



The text you are quoting:

Hi Oded,


Creches don't really have a calendar year.   They are closed for several weeks in the summer, at Christmas, Easter, etc.   Spaces open up as spaces come free, which can happen for many reasons in Geneva, and any time of year.   Some reasons why places come open:


- Family relocated so kids pulled out of childcare
- Younger sibling comes along so the mother now home so takes her older child out of full-time care, freeing up part-time space on the other days
- Child offered a place in a private preschool, freeing up space
- Makes a friend so families hire a shared nanny and leave public system
- etc.

Once you are in part-time, getting more days also easier.


Have your friend's spouse join Moms-in-Vaud so she can get a head start asking questions before she arrives.   A copy of the know-it-all passport is also a good idea (www.knowitall.ch).


-Michelle




Michelle W, Jun 21, 2012 @ 13:31
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 8

Thanks again Michelle,


Very good info as I was sure the time frames were more rigid.


My friend is a 'he' not a 'she',but I'll tell him about the moms in Vaud group :-)


Thanks again,



Oded


 

The text you are quoting:

Thanks again Michelle,


Very good info as I was sure the time frames were more rigid.


My friend is a 'he' not a 'she',but I'll tell him about the moms in Vaud group :-)


Thanks again,



Oded


 


SiteAdmin Oded, Jun 21, 2012 @ 13:26
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 9

Thanks again Michelle,

Very good info as I was sure the time frames were more rigid.

My friend is a 'he' not a 'she',but I'll tell him about the moms in Vaud group :-)

Thanks again,


Oded

 


Jun 21, 12 13:26

Yes, I said "friend's spouse.. she"

The text you are quoting:

Yes, I said "friend's spouse.. she"


Michelle W, Jun 21, 2012 @ 13:56
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 10

maybe your friend should move to ferney- voltaire. My friend moved there 6 months ago and they toke her kids in whit no problems. And ferney is not so far from Geneva.

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maybe your friend should move to ferney- voltaire. My friend moved there 6 months ago and they toke her kids in whit no problems. And ferney is not so far from Geneva.


Merike, Jun 21, 2012 @ 14:37
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 11

Hi Merike,


 


can you specfy that a bit? where did he bring his kids?

The text you are quoting:

Hi Merike,


 


can you specfy that a bit? where did he bring his kids?


Francisco Moreno, Oct 28, 2015 @ 21:34
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Re: Getting a spot in a Creche / Kindergarten in Geneva - Mission Impossible?
Post 12

There is also The Little Green House private creche & daycare. Excellent bilingual child care & kindergarten. Sites currently in Gland & Morges but opening a site in Versoix in January.


Website: http://www.littlegreenhouse.ch/en/


Regards


Sam


 


 


 
Woodhouse Carpentry & Custom Furniture
www.wood-house.ch
contact@wood-house.ch
079 763 58 97

Workshop address: Chemin Delay 3, 1214 Vernier
Postal address: Rue de Saint Jean 23, 1203 Genève

The text you are quoting:

There is also The Little Green House private creche & daycare. Excellent bilingual child care & kindergarten. Sites currently in Gland & Morges but opening a site in Versoix in January.


Website: http://www.littlegreenhouse.ch/en/


Regards


Sam


 


 


 
Woodhouse Carpentry & Custom Furniture
www.wood-house.ch
contact@wood-house.ch
079 763 58 97

Workshop address: Chemin Delay 3, 1214 Vernier
Postal address: Rue de Saint Jean 23, 1203 Genève


SamW, Oct 29, 2015 @ 18:39
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