Child-care Options for School-aged Children

This is an updated post (originally published June 2015). Last update: 13 February 2017.


Shortly after I published my blog “Ten Reasons We Love Our First Two Years at Public School“, I received a question from Miya, a local mom.

“How do working moms negotiate the strange hours for 1p and 2p? Here, it’s Mon-Wed mornings, Thursdays till 3 and Fri off. Our local UAPE costs more than if we put our son in private school.”

I have to agree with Miya in regards to expensive child care in Switzerland. A few years ago I was talking to a friend who lived in Germany, I almost fell off my chair when she told me that their day-care cost EUR190 PER MONTH for a 5-day week, while I used to pay CHF125 PER DAY. While the quality of Swiss child care is outstanding, the price IS astronomical.

So how do the employed parents deal with the before-, between- and after-school care when they sent their kids to public school? Here are some possibilities that I gathered from own experience as well as other parents I know.

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Teachers and Day-Care Childminders – Should You Give Presents?

A re-post from June 2015


We are only a couple of weeks to end-of-school term, and are also nearing the summer holiday time of many day-cares. I have heard questions regarding presents for teachers and day-care childminders around this time, as well as before Christmas. What is the norm here in Switzerland?

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What Your Child Needs for the First Year of School


I learned that many parents (I was one) were eager to get the official list of items their children would need for the first year of school early. One of the reasons is usually to buy those things cheaper while they go on summer holiday abroad.

But the truth is, the “official” things listed are not many. And all can be bought here inside CH inexpensively. The list usually short and consists of:

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Our First 2 Years in Public School: Some Things I Learned


In this post I share some things I learned during the first 2 years of obligatory school in our local public school – that is during the 1P and 2P (HarmoS) or more or less equivalent to kindergarten and enfantine. Some of the experiences were rather unexpected to me when my daughter just started, although nothing was actually bad!

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Ten Reasons We Love Our First Two Years in the Public School

Re-post from last year: If your children are or will turn four by 31st July this year, then you will receive a letter for school registration from your local public school soon. If you have been unsure about sending your child into the public system, perhaps this post could help you make the decision.


One thing that I quickly learned when my daughter starts going to public school was that schooling options could lead to a lengthy arguments among parents. Even one of my friends, who sends her child to a private school, rolled her eyes when I mentioned that I loved our public school. But I think it’s just how parenting always is. There is not one option that will suit every single child, and as parents believe in their choice it could be a discomfort to accept that other parents love a different choice.

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Salon des Métiers et de la Formation, 24-30 Nov 2014

Important post for the parents of and older kids!

Salon des Métiers et de la Formation (Careers and Training Exhibition) will be held next week at Beaulieu in Lausanne. This is the event where professionals from many fields gather and interact with the children and parents about the many kinds of jobs they can go for in the future. Entry is free and according to the downloadable info for parents:

Come along with your child and take the opportunity to find out about professions for today and for tomorrow, the requirements, the training programs and career options. We suggest you make a family visit on Wednesday afternoon, Saturday or Sunday. This will avoid the visiting times for school groups and you can talk to the professionals more comfortably.


Careers and Training Exhibition, Lausanne
24-30 November 2014
Tuesday to Friday 8 am to 5 pm, Saturday and Sunday 9 am to 5 pm
Entrance free

*Image courtesy of MCH Group SA

This & That Week #37 – Sept 2013

I believe that many of you who followed me on facebook know that I was having a mommy burnt out, thus the lack of post lately. Today I am happy to tell you that I am doing so much better. I was able to pinpoint the problems and worked on them. I even achieved my goal to hard-core de-clutter (see this post) and had taken out 500 items from the house and more than 100 more items will follow in the next weeks! Our (now) more organized house really help me keep my sanity 🙂 I will still be on recovery mode for sometime, but I’m slowly coming back to this blog and you, so worry not! You’ll see more of me soon!

In the meantime, here are some very interesting things going on this and next week:

  • Not to be missed: 2013 Workshops on Raising Multilingual Children by Tracey Tokuhama-Espinosa in St. Sulpice on 19 Sept 2013. I really can’t recommend it highly enough. I went to this workshop a few years ago and what I learned there has been really, REALLY helpful to me. More info here.
  • Lausanne Mums & Mums-to-be next scheduled coffee mornings: in Starbucks, St Laurent, Tuesday 17 September from 10:30am to 1pm. They usually sat round at the back to the left. The Lutry Beach meet-ups will be on Tuesday 24 September, from 1:00pm to 3:30pm, weather permitting. (This group is not organized by me, but I used to attend it when my kiddos were still babies)
  • The huge annual fair Comptoir Suisse will start this week (13-22 Sept) in Beaulieu. And on Sunday, 15 Sept (traditionnelle journée des Jeunesses campagnardes) there will be many events that cater the children.
  • Kate of Edible Art will have a beginner cupcake class, starting on Monday, 16 September 2013 8-9:30pm. The class runs for 3 weeks – 3 Mondays in a row. The cost CHF50/lesson (ideally you need to attend all 3 lesson as you build on what you learn each lesson). Contact Kate at 079 844 52 18 or lausannecupcake (AT) to sign up or more info.
  • Open house of The International Cottage, a private school in Vevey. Wednesday September 25,  2-4pm. More info here

Take care!


This & That Week #27 – July 2013

Hi there,

Huge apology that I haven’t posted for sooo long now. I’ve been mostly busy with my kids (what else), but also very busy re-organizing my/our life. Two years after we moved, our house is still a mess and I still couldn’t find things easily. I found it unacceptable. So after evaluating my/our situation, I realized that: (1) I spent too much time online and (2) we own too many stuff.

The last weeks I’ve been decreasing my online time and de-cluttering our house. In fact I set up a goal: “500 items gone in 100 days” – to trash, donation, hand-down, and sell. Hopefully, by mid September, we’ll own 500 fewer items (which we obviously don’t need). So far I managed to rid 200 items, and it already feel so much better at home!


I know that many of you are expats and used to move around the globe. I bet you are experts on de-cluttering. Let me know, have you done hard core de-cluttering? Do you have any tips to spare?

OK, ’nuff about me.

Now that the school holiday has started and summer is here, we have a lot going on in Lausanne and beyond:

Other things worth mentioning:

  • A new website: to help parents understand the changes on school system in Vaud (in French)
  • For those leaving home for vacation, please take extra care to secure your home. See this post for some info and link to a useful checklist
  • If you’re flying with small children and have time to kill at the airport, go to the dedicated playrooms (in Geneva or Zurich). I promise you won’t regret it 🙂

And finally, there is Züri Fäscht in Zurich – happening this weekend 5-7 July that sounds awesome and with huge fireworks on Friday and Saturday evenings.

Happy summer!


New School: Oxford International College Switzerland in Château-d’Oex

Sponsored Post


I have two good news. First, Lausanne Mom has a new sponsor. And there is an even better news, this new sponsor is a new international school. From 12 September 2013, Oxford International College Switzerland, located in the center of Château-d’Oex, will welcome 60 students aged 14-18. The school takes over the Perce-Neige guest house (originally built in 1905 as a boarding school for young ladies of good standing) that will allow them to have both international boarders and day students in the school.


The school founders, a husband-and-wife team, Barbara and Pascal Lorenzetti, have had many years of international life. They have raised their three children in different countries, so that they understand the need of many expat parents when it comes to picking the right school for their children.

If you are looking for a school for your children who are in this age range, you really should check their website for the academic and other programs (sports, cultural activities) that they offer in the school. There will also be an information weekend, coming on the weekend of 20-21 April 2013 (registration through their website). The information weekend will take place at Hôtel de Ville, Grande Rue 70, Château-d’Oex (opposite the Town Hall).

For more information, please contact:
Direct dial +41 (0) 78 805 04 05
Email: info (AT) oicswitzerland (DOT) com

*Photo courtesy of Oxford International College Switzerland

This & That Week #8 – February 2013

Salut! How did your first days of school holidays go? I hope you and the kids are having a blast. Especially now that the weather seems to be on our side – Yay!

Yesterday we ran around many stores in Lausanne as I needed to buy somethings, and just when my kids started to get bored, we ran into this fire truck in Bél-Air. Their day, made.


Here’s my list for this week:

  • The Leman Expat Student Fair, at Beaulieu Lausanne, 13-14 March 2013. Free if register in advance, CHF10 at the door.
  • I just learned last week that it’s possible to make appointment at CHUV and PMU through the web (go to the main page and click on “Demander un rendez-vous“) . This is really great for someone like me — as phone call is difficult to make during the day (that is, unless the other side doesn’t mind hearing screaming kids from my side).
  • Mary Poppins is coming to Lausanne – 21-23 March 2013 (Just ordered our tickets!)
  • Prince will be back with 3 shows at the Montreux Jazz Festival in July. Tickets are now available to purchase (link).
  • Brandy Butler, an American mom (originally from Philadelphia) who has very well integrated in CH is now competing for “The Voice of Switzerland“. See her audition on YouTube. Her next battle will be this Saturday on SF1 – can’t wait! We watched the last battle last Saturday and it was super entertaining.
  • Bravo, Nicole, for raising CHF16k towards childhood cancer fund!
  • Goodness Gracious Foods is looking for more retailers in Lausanne and they need help to persuade independent stores to order their products. For each store that orders, you will be paid 50 francs and also receive 10% of the first order. If you are interested or need more info, please contact GG team directly

Enjoy the sunshine!

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