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Hello Moms. I'm so glad that I found this forum. I'm a mom of 2 boys (7 & 3). We are planning to move to Zurich in July 2013 as I have recently accepted an offer in Opfikon. We are considering two schools: International School Zurich North in Wallisellen and Inter Community in Zumikon. The school in Wallisellen will be closer to work, although from what I've read it isn't the prettiest (near industrial area)? We are planning a preview trip in March, but any input would be helpful. I read the ICS quite popular. Thank you.
Hi, I don't know the schools personally but drive past ISZN quite often - it is in a strange location for a school, in the middle of an industrial estate, behind a car dealership and looks like an old office block.
My DH used to work in Opfikon, we sent our DC's to local school and that has worked out well - it's an option worth considering if you're planning to stay more than a year or two. Some of his colleagues there had DC's in Obersee Bilingual School and other people I've met also highly rate this school.
It's worth searching www.englishforum.ch for feedback on the international schools. Or try the yahoo families in zurich group.
I was a bit concern when I read about the ISZN location. My gut feeling is to go with Inter Community. We would need to live somewhere in between school and Opfikon, so at least the commute to school from home won't be too long. How difficult is it to hire a live out nanny -- we will only need a part time to help with school pick up and stay with the kids till 6pm. thanks again
It is more common to have an aupair live in . Nannies don't really exist as such and there are strict rules applying to employment in the home. You may be able to find a TA or local babysitter who could help with afterschool care.
A bi-lingual option is great if it's possible with a reputable school as mentioned up thread.
My DS is in his third year of bi-lingual immersion (one week English, one week German) and it works very well. It just enabled him to integrate more with the local kids in the street, but doesn't delay his English language and curriculum if we are moving on.
No reason why your youngest couldn't go local though? There are kindergartens within 500m - 1km of most people, class sizes are small and facilities are excellent. There isn't the UK focus on curriculum so it gives kids time to pick up the language (Swiss German). Zurich being such an international city, there would most likely be wuite a few international kids attending. The government even give free lessons to help integrate children. However the hours are restrictive if you are a working mum. (8-12 three days a week!)
There would always be the option of looking for a tagesmutter (child minder)?There are usually website links on local gemeinde websites.