In nurseries and day care centres, children are split into groups depending on their age:
- children aged 0 to 18 or 24 months: « nursery » or « babies » group.
- children from 18 or 24 months to 30 or 36 months: « toddlers ».
- children from 30 or 36 months until they reach school age: « pre-schoolers ».
Subsidised nurseries (which are part-funded by the public authorities or directly by some large employers, including UNIL) offer fixed prices based on the parents’ income. To secure a place in a subsidised nursery, you will need to register your children with a « réseau d’accueil de la petite enfance » (childcare network).
These networks cover the full range of subsidised services (nurseries, childminding and out-of-school care) and are funded by cantonal and municipal contributions, businesses and households, through the Fondation pour l’accueil de jour des enfants (FAJE). This system was set up following the entry into force of the Children's Day Care Act (LAJE) (PDF) of 20 June 2006. Each network uses the same registration procedure and scale of fees.
You can register your child with the network that covers the municipality where you live and/or the network that has an agreement with your employer: for UNIL, the Réseau-L (lausannois), which includes the nurseries on campus. In general, you register on a central waiting list, from the fourth month of pregnancy onwards.
In addition to nurseries incorporated into the networks, there are also non-subsidised nurseries. The prices charged by these nurseries do not depend on the parents’ salary and can be as much as CHF 3'000.- per month for a full-time place.
- Nurseries in the canton of Vaud (subsidised or non-subsidised)
- Occasional financial support for childcare - UNIL