Free schools in Switzerland: who are they for and how to apply

Students can enroll in schools, where language of instruction can be German, French, Italian. Swiss schools provides opportunity to study simultaneously several languages.

Parents do not have to pay any tuition fees at public schools. However, during studying in  public primary schools, some fees and extra payments can be charged, depending on the canton. Certain educational materials, school trips, extracurricular activities can be extra paid during academic year.

List of extra charges:

  • Medical insurance;
  • Trips and excursions;
  • Extracurricular activities;
  • Sport sections and circles of interest.

Recruitment to school for students

Application procedures for state primary schools in Switzerland depend on the canton. Swiss schools begin to accept foreign students from the age of six years old.

Primary schools generally accept children at any time during the year. It is better to think about application process at the beginning of a term. Enrollment is not a difficult process, but students or their parents should prepare all package of documents.

List of documents and requirements to prepare for enrollment:

  • Level of language of instructions: above average;
  • Previous educational certificates for last 2-3 years (if available);
  • Medical card;
  • Personal characteristics;
  • Motivation letter;
  • Personal information:
    • Child’s birth certificate;
    • Health and accident insurance;
    • Resident’s permit.
  • Testing and interviews: personal or via Skype.

The optimal age for studying abroad is from 12 years old, but international students can join Swiss educational system from primary level.  Foreign students will have enough time for integration into the Swiss environment.

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