I think that I might have mentioned here and there in other posts that Little O is changing to a new preschool. He has been attending a private* bilingual preschool since June last year but we stayed in the queue for our five chosen state-run preschools. Normally, you would sign up for a state-run preschool when your child is six months old and decide on a starting month (any time after they have turned one) and then you would be guaranteed a spot at a preschool – not necessarily one of your five choices or even in your immediate area, but you’d get a place. However, if you take a place at another preschool before that point, you can stay in the queue but you lose the right to a guaranteed place.
So we signed up Little O when he was six months old and then accepted a place at the private preschool just before he turned one (for him to start when he was 13 months old) as we were so far down the queue for our five choices that we could not imagine getting a place at any of them. It now seems that we would have got a place at one, but it was just so hard to judge at the time. We remained in the queue for the five and then in April this year, we finally got a place for him at our first choice. Cue many celebrations!
We had become increasingly disillusioned with the preschool he was at (a mixture of high staff turnover, quite high child turnover, many teething problems (it was newly opened), issues with nappies and illness and, finally, a biting epidemic, which we felt was (and is still being) handled ineffectively). Also, his new preschool is midway between our new apartment and both of our offices, so it will be ideal when I am back at work next year.
When we received our welcome and information pack from the new preschool I was so pleased by some things I found in there. Each child has a book that we stick pictures of family into and which all his drawings and artwork from preschool will also be stuck into over the course of the year.
They have a great policy for encouraging bilingual children and the book should be labelled in both languages that the child uses. The information provided in very thorough, which is something that I felt has been lacking at his current preschool. He’s two and he needs structure and a solid framework around him on a daily basis.
The more we read through the info pack, the happier we became. We had, of course, visited the preschool on an open day but that was before Little O was even six months old, so we could not remember all the details.
Now we just need to work out how we handle moving apartment in the same week that Little O has his “schooling in” (inskolning) days to introduce him to life at the new preschool!
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* although private just means that it is run by a company, and not the local authority; you pay exactly the same fee as you do at a state-run preschool (I’m still trying to get my head around this concept…)