Pre-schools in Italy???

tammy garnett Image
09/25/2009 - 14:59

Can anyone recommend some good pre-schools in Italy at all? I am open to all different parts of Italy at the moment, until I narrow it down later on after all our research.I have a 3 year old son and need to have a look at a few schools online before we visit them.Regards,Tammy...x



 Have you heard of the Parma project? I know very little about it  only what I saw on a documentary (some years ago) here in Italy about  some pre schools in Parma . I remember thinking at the time what great schools they seemed to be. 

In reply to by chardonnay

Hi Chardonnay, No, I have never heard of Parma Project - is that what it is called? I can search it online I guess. Let me know if that is what it is called.Thank you so much for letting me know! Im just trying to get some schools from people who know Italy and the schools there as I could search any schools but dont have a clue as to whether or not they are good or bad schools! Regards,Tammy...x

Hi Tammy, I think the reason so many people have looked and not commented is because Italy varies so much from region to region (even comune to comune) that you'll probably only get some advice once you narrow down your geographical search. If you're thinking of Tuscany, I would say that is in Central Italy so this might be confusing people. Do you mean Northern Italy or Central Italy (Tuscany/Umbria/Marche)? Maybe Abruzzo is even in Central Italy too (Abruzzese - are you?).Also, Italians aren't big on websites. You might find some places have a rudimentary website that might not work and almost certainly won't have prices. It is changing but researching things via the web is only of limited use because the use of the internet is so behind most countries like the UK and US.Maybe if you make a list of the actual towns that you are thinking of then people might be able to give more specific advice

In reply to by Penny

Hi Penny, Thanks for letting me know I was being too vague! I will do a bit of research this afternoon and will try and narrow down my region. My husband kept telling me Tuscany was in Northern Italy - haha, so I just presumed and didnt check up on that :)So I need to basically choose a region and research region by region to narrow down an area which I would like to know more about - am I on the right track???I suppose we will only actually know once we have visited the country as to where we would like to move to.You have been such a great help on all my topic discussions! THANKS!Ill narrow it down and let you know :) Kind Regards,Tammy.

pre school education is in fact famous in the area of reggio emilia.even the swedish government sent commissions to "study" their activities they have set unrivalled standards of excellence ( and i'm referring to public structures not private education) however and unfortunately this is not the case over most of the country,where in many areas there is a gross shortage of pre schools or others which are little more than parking lots for infants...some years ago i was involved in an initiative of the company i then worked for in italy (Lego) and was able to witness personally these great institutions.

What age is your child? Kids don't normslly start school here until they are 6. But there is a pre school system,called the Azilo (Azelo?), in most communé, where 3 to 6 year olds can attend. It's a type of hybrid between a montessori and junior infants in a primary school as we know it.Our soon to be 5 year old has been going to the local Azilo since January and has just started his second term on schools reopening in september. He loves it!  

In reply to by Ronan

Hi ROnan, My son is 3 now - he will be 4 when we hopefully move to Italy. I thought they had pre-schools there?If I google Azilo, hopefully Ill find some info on it. Is it basically like a pre-school and not a daycare???Im still looking around at areas as to where we would like to move to in Italy - where would you recommend moving to with kids? We want to make sure there is enough to keep him busy and that there are things to do as a family wherever we move to in Italy. Thanks for the comment.Regards,Tammy...

The name is 'asilo' and most Comunes have their own system which will consist of the 'Asilo Nido' (creche) for babies from 3 months to 3years and then the 'Asilo Materna' for 3 to 5 year olds. Then all children at 6 go to the 'scuola media' up to 11 years - unless they fail any years schooling in which case they stay back and repeat the year...  That is followed by the 'scuola secondaria' and the same system applies until the child finishes their education at 16 or continues to further education.But back to the 'asilo's'. The state run ones are very good but also very full... The child can (usually) be left anytime between 0730 and 1800 Monday to Friday. They will be cared for and provided with a cooked meal (usually pasta, main course and fruit) every day and a merendina in the afternoon. They are looked after by qualified childrens carers/teachers. The monthly cost is usually free and any 'extras' will be set by the Comune and so can vary from place to place. Some places also have 'church asilo's' whish are run by nuns - these are very good too. Here is a list of all the state run schools - region by region - to give you some idea of what is available throughout Italy.     N.B. I am only au fait with the asilo system in the Milan area because my niece has 'taught' at an asilo nido for the past 28 years.   

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Hi Carole,Thank you so much for all the information you have provided me with! I have been trying to get websites for some time now as every time I search for pre-schools in Italy, I can't seem to find what I am looking for! I have not had the time to do any research over the past few weeks, but I will be doing some research soon! And I will DEFINATELY use the websites you have provided! I did, however, read up on all the 'Asilo Nido' , 'Asilo Materna' ,  'scuola media'  and 'scuola secondaria'  on a few of the web pages I managed to find. That is why I was confused when people said there were no pre-schools....I will have a look at those websites and let you know how I go.Thanks again for all your help.Kind Regards,Tammy.

 Don't want to confuse you, the Italian school system is:Asilo nido (also called scuola materna) 2 1/2 - 5 1/2-6 years (they do have a pre-school programme, mainly the last year preparing them for the scuola primaria, even though this is not compulsory parents are recommended to let their children participate in the last year in order to prepare them for the elementary school ).

... OK let's take your question seriously .... there must be a thousand answers to this question but here's just one ....the area around Umbertide, Perugia is quite the most beautiful part of Italy I have seen so far.There is a good (?) ex-pat community here so masses of local playmates to get to know... for you too.The school at Lisciano Niccone has the nicest teachers you could imagine and I think you can do scuola materna there and carry on from there... our 7 year old now goes to a sweet little school in Preggio and to Lisciano Niccone twice a week.Private pre pre-school Italian lessons are easy to arrange.The local airport is Perugia - half an hour away -    You won't see any of this on the web  but if you want to do a recce here PM me.

Hi Tammy - can you please tell me where you ended up sending your child(ren) to school?  My wife and I are thinking about spending 3 months in Italy (possibly tuscany, but we're flexible) and want to know whether it's possible to get our 5-year-old and/or our 2-year-old into any kind of school (we're fine paying for a private school, we just want somewhere to send the kids for a few hours a day).  Would love to know what you ultimately decided to do.  Thanks!!