Frequently Asked Questions
We are always happy to answer questions in person, over the phone or by email, but before you contact us you may like to take a look at the list below to see if your question has already been answered... If you do not find the information you are looking for here please do not hesitate to contact us.
Although across our locations we have places available for all our services, there are some combinations where waiting lists currently exist. It is important to note, however, that as we serve a transient, internationally mobile community, places frequently become available throughout the year.
Siblings of current Zein children have priority for entry and, at our Day Care located on the BSN Leidschenveen Campus (The Willows), we give priority to those children registered for the British School.
Please contact us to check availability for the location and service you are interested in.
Zein Child Care is open on all working days from Monday to Friday:
Day Care: from 07:30 to 18:30 hrs. at The Estate, The Maples and The Willows and The Little Castle.
Pre-school Playgroup: Maples: 08:00 Estate: 08.30 -12.30
After School Care : from 15.00 (or earlier on early dismissal days) to 18.30
Holiday Camps / Care: from 8:00 to 18:30 hrs.
We do not offer a sibling discount as the cost of care does not differ per sibling... You may like to know however that the Dutch Child Care Allowance offer significant additional savings for siblings, so in reality, a sibling discount is already applied to our fees if you make use of the allowance.
English-speaking and bilingual Day Care
At two out of our four Day Care locations, English the main language for communication between our teachers and the children. Here, we encourage the children to speak in English, however, we do acknowledge that for some children as this is not their native tongue it may be difficult and challenging for them at the beginning.
We work carefully and sensitively with the children - whatever their age - to ensure that we are able to establish a good level of communication. Our teachers are from international backgrounds and most speak several languages - including Dutch - so when necessary we will communicate in different languages to ensure every child feels happy and secure.
Following many years of experience in providing a specially designed internationally-oriented approach to English-speaking childcare, we offer bilingual (Eng-Dutch) After School Care groups at The Estate in Benoordenhout as well as bilingual (Eng-Dutch) Day Care groups for children aged 0 – 4 years at three of our locations: The Estate in Benoordenhout, The Little Castle in Voorburg and The Willows in Leidschenveen.
If you receive a confirmed place for your child then the day/days that you have in your contract are reserved exclusively for your child. We also plan in the correct amount of staff for the expected number of children and cannot cancel our care givers when children do not turn up. This situation is the same regardless of the service you are using. For these reasons we cannot refund any day or days that you decide not to use.
If you wish to permanently change the amount of days that your child attends then you can do so giving one full calendar month notice, subject to availability if more days are required.
No, in order to ensure our staffing ratios and high level of service we offer full care days only. Whilst parents are free to collect or bring their child at any time during the day, if circumstances dictate, you will still be invoiced for the full day.
No, if a child attend Zein then they should not attend any other centre. For the sake of the child we ask parents to commit to one Day Care provider only. Likewise, we do not allow children to attend different days at different Zein locations, or even different rooms in the same location. Switching between different care environments can be extremely unsettling for young children and can have a negative impact on the type of behaviour children exhibit within their group. Children at Zein will be assigned to a particular Day Care room/group and will stay with those carers and children throughout their time with us,
We pride ourselves on a higher staff to child ratio than other Dutch Day Care providers. We have 3 members of staff per group and the maximum number of children in a group varies from 12-16 according to the size of the room. We work with an early, middle, late shift arrangement which is organised as follows:
Carer 1 07:30 - 17:00
Carer 2 08:45 - 17:45 or 09:00 - 18:00 (times dependent on the needs of the group)
Carer 3 09:30 - 18:30
We offer bilingual (Eng-Dutch) Day Care groups for children aged 0 – 4 years at The Estate in Benoordenhout, The Little Castle in Voorburg and The Willows in Leidschenveen.
We also offer bilingual (Eng-Dutch) After School Care groups for children aged 4-12 at The Estate in Benoordenhout for children from the British School in the Netherlands as well as surrounding Dutch Schools.
As for our other locations, the core language is English as we accommodate children from a wide range of nationalities who are exposed to a range of languages both at home and in their wider environment. To ensure that the children in our care are able to successfully interact with each other - and form a bond with other children as well as the care givers in their group - we stick to English as the core language of instruction. We do, however, employ international staff, many of whom have a different mother tongue. This diversity of language ability can be particularly helpful during the induction period in helping new children to settle.
During both term time and holidays we always do our best to remain flexible to the changing needs of families. The flexibility does, however, need to be balanced against our own need to arrange staff shifts, plan activities and so on. For this reason the following applies to the 'swapping' of days:
- Requests for swapping days must be made 2 weeks in advance
- Requests are permitted during both term time and holiday time
- The approval of requests will always be subject to availability of places - this availability may be linked to staff shifts and/or maximum numbers allowed in a particular location.
- If a request for a day swap is accompanied by a booking request for additional days in that same week it will be given priority over a straight swap.
- Swaps during half term breaks and end of term holidays can only be made within the same holiday period. (i.e. You cannot use or 'carry over' days from the October half term break and swap them in for alternate days during the February break.)
- Two non-field trip days cannot be swapped for two field trip days - i.e. you cannot request to only attend on field trip days and no other. Field trips are generally on a Tuesday and Thursday, but please double check with our Admissions office before making requests if you are unsure.
No, we plan our groups and staffing carefully and need to have a clear view of the number of children attending each day. On application you will be asked to specify which days of the week you would like care for your child.
Subject to places being available, and a reasonable notice period, it is possible to request additional days or (on occasion) to swap a day. Day swaps and extra days are handled by our Admissions Team who can be contacted via firstname.lastname@example.org
Our After School Care service is linked directly with specific schools - we pick up from a number of Dutch schools and details of the schools we serve can be found here.
If your child attends a school not on this list then, unfortunately, they cannot attend our After School Care. They are welcome, however, to attend any of our locations for Holiday Camps. If you are interested in this type of Out of School Care (buitenschoolseopvang) for your child please contact us and we will be happy to advise you.
We ask parents to book full weeks – especially when selecting a Theme Camp - to help ensure all children mix together and bond as a group, as well as ensuring they get the most out of the theme. When a child attends camp for the first time it can take a day or so for them to really settle into the routine and to start making new friends. Attending the whole week will also allow your child to get the most out of the program – activities are frequently designed to develop and build on skills as the week goes on, and multiple day projects are usually completed on a Friday.
Following the initial 5 day booking, your child can attend as many camp days as they like, with a minimum booking requirement of 2 days per camp week.