Archive for ‘School Matters!’

August 22, 2013

School Matters! Luzern Edition


March 12, 2013

Happy 10th Birthday Stepping Stones!

DSC_0139There are only a handful of companies which became an essential part of the expat community in Zug; Stepping Stones, School for Early Childhood Education is one of them. Regardless the age of your children, you can’t live in Zug without regularly hearing about it in different context, and most interestingly, every opinion I heard was always very good. The 10th anniversary is an important landmark in the life of every company, and it is the perfect excuse for me to look around the premises and to have a nice conversation with Linda van Veelen, one of the three founders.

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February 28, 2013

Next School Matters! is in 2014

The most difficult part of organising School Matters! is always to decide which aspect of education will NOT be included int the event. The list of intriguing topics is endless, but we feel that 2 hours of speeches for one evening are more than enough. This year we heard about

  • work/life balance,
  • concept centred curriculum, 
  • differences between IB and Matura,
  • bilingualism
  • technology in early years
  • brain development

If you missed it you can have an idea of what happened there here:

We had more than 100 visitors, 12 exhibitors and 6 speeches. We sent out a survey after the event and the feedback received is encouraging; 80% of participants said that the School Matters! 2013 was better than expected and 20% would have liked to have more speeches…

The next one is forecasted for the 28th of February 2014, we’ll keep you informed about the organisational process!

February 9, 2013

School Matters! 2013 program

work-life-balance         For detailed program click here:


We’ll be there waiting for you. If you’d like to invite friends or contacts, feel free to pass this invitation around!


January 31, 2013

Learn about the work/life balance initiative @School Matters! on the 22nd of Feb

work-life-balanceSwitzerland is going to vote (yes, again!) on the 3rd of March. A constitutional amendment is presented to vote called the “Family initiative”. What is it about? Should I be interested in this?

Decide for yourself: this initiative might make life easier for every family living and working in Switzerland…

We are privileged to introduce Ms Claudia Lanter, member of CVP (the party which presented the family initiative to vote) to the audience of the second edition of School Matters! She will introduce the most important pillars of the initiative and will answer the questions- we sure have many!Working-Mum-And-Baby-dp-1

It seems that there are profound changes in the Swiss society which lead to rethink the role of the State in childcare. Switzerland is way behind other European countries when it comes to childcare. Certainly not because of financial reasons though… in this society women stay at home with children, even after kids reach the school age. However due to the higher education of our generation (and probably to the increasing divorce rate too), women would like to work more, which is nearly impossible with the present school system. We see kids walking to school at 8am, how cute! But what are they doing again on the streets at 12:00? And at 1pm? At 2pm? All day long??? What happens is that children walk home for lunch, sometime they go back to school for few more lessons, sometime they stay at home. The schedule of children might change from week to week. During primary school years moms have to be prepared to receive a phone call around 7am: “No school today, the teacher is sick!”Can you work around such a school system? Can you afford  a full-time nanny? There you go…

Yes, this initiative is important and will affect the life of most of the Swiss families. We are looking forward to learn about it

January 25, 2013

School Matters!-Zug Tourismus is in

I had an extremely interesting meeting with Urs Raschle, head of Zug Tourismus. I knew that the Kanton is worried about the lack of integration of the expat community, but it was new to me that now basically every office, department etc is trying to come up with ideas how to involve more foreigners into Swiss activities.

20703The idea came quite spontaneously; many families will be at the School Matters! on the 22nd of February…why not put a short presentation together about family and child friendly activites in and around Zug..? WHERE do Swiss families bring their kids, WHAT they do in their free time, HOW do they manage to grow them so close to the nature? How come they don’t seem to struggle to bring children outside to the fresh air?

Snap decision taken; they will be there and will share their secrets with us! Dare to say that Swiss people/public organization can’t be spontaneous!

January 21, 2013

School Matters! 2013- Andy is in!

Andy Habermacher is in for this School Matters! 2013…this is the news of the day, it really made the sun shine brighter. I received this very heartfelt and detailed mail regarding our cooperation:

(C)Andaleeb Lilley Photography 2009“Hi there

Happy to do  it – so yes count me in!


Why am I so excited about his participation? I’m sure he doesn’t need to be introduced, everybody in and around Zug knows that he is a Brain Leader, great coach and excellent public speaker.

At this point I must reveal another speech of the event…it is really a shame, I like to keep my secrets, but I would like to show you how Andy fits the program.

I already told about the speech on Bilingualism, and here you are; we’ll have one on Technology in Early Years.

Both influence the development of the brain; Andy is going to tell you and show you how.

Were you as afraid as I was to let kids use computer, Internet, games..? I really fought as long as I could. Now the first generation successfully survived and grew up, we have the first experiences. Was I right preventing them to use technology, or did I make a mistake?

Were you asking yourself how many languages those poor kids should learn at the same time? Will they be confused? Will they mix them up? Will they have a large vocabulary in every language? How do several languages mix with dyslexia, or other issues?

Come along on the 22nd of Feb and have your questions answered.

January 17, 2013

School Matters! 2013

School Matters! is a series of events started in 2012. As a first attempt I organized a panel discussion about the different educational systems co-existing in Zug.

Here you can see the invitation to the event. At that time SwissLinked was called ZIBF (I  know, but we changed it!)ZIBF_School_Matters_Invitation

An inspiring panel discussion
An inspiring panel discussion

Here we are one year after the first School Matters! discussion organized in Zug. It is still heartwarming to remember the success, the countless positive feedbacks received.

If you were there, I’m sure you remember the good mood, the open mind of the participants and the many funny moments of the evening.

We kinda poked a beehive with that discussion about different educational systems co-existing in and around Zug. We booked the room for 2 hours, after 3 we had to ask the audience to leave. So many questions, very polite and politically correct at the beginning, more agressive and embarrassing towards the end.

We achieved our goal; a dialogue has opened and one year later I’m here organizing the second chapter. On a whole new level.

There will be workshops at given times, so that everybody knows at what time what topic are we going to discuss. There won’t be any adveritsing or sales activity on the stage, only discussions, presentations, workshops; information and inspiration.

Schools, Kindergartens and nurseries will have stands around the room, there will be time for networking; everybody will be able to connect with the audience.

Shall I disclose more information at this stage about the program of the day?

I don’t think so…whatch this space and discover more in the coming days!

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