Practicalities for the USI community

Child Care

Education system in Ticino 

In Ticino mandatory education starts at age 4, and ends at 11 years.

More precisely, the cantonal education model provides 2 years of mandatory kindergarten (with one optional year starting at age 3), 5 years of elementary school and 4 years of middle school.


  • Nursery

Children under 4 years of age can attend, for a fee, one of the nurseries authorized or recognized by the Canton or be entrusted to a Daily Family. Below the list of all nurseries in Ticino.

USI does not run, at the moment, a nursery service of its own, but has a number of reserved places in the nurseries of Lugano and Mendrisio for the members of its community wishing or needing to place their children (aged 0 to 3-4 years) in such facilities.

Members of the University community with limited income may apply for financial assistance to cover nursery and child-care costs.

The Equal Opportunities Service is available to provide more information on vacancies in such facilities, and/or to seek one-to-one advice on existing opportunities for reconciling work and family life responsibilities.


  • Activities during the school holidays

The Equal Opportunities Service is available to provide information to USI parents about extra-school activities available to children during the holidays periods, and organised by the University or by the cantonal authorities.


  • Baby Pit Stop

USI offers to parents special rooms for breastfeeding and preparation of infant formula, as well as practical services for childcare within the campus (changing tables, high chairs, etc.). For information on these services, contact the Equal Opportunities Service.


  • Back-up Care

Specific services to meet the needs of parents, especially in the case of particular problems, such as child illness, are available in Ticino. These services can provide medical or materials aid based on the child and family needs.

More precisely, the Croce Rossa Svizzera in Lugano offers the following services:

  • Baby Help, at home, in the case of children' sickness (age: from 0 to 12 years). The service include rapid interventions, and it is of limited duration.
  • Mamy Help, at home, in case of parents are ill and temporarily unable to take care of their children.
  • Baby Sitting during the day, at home, in the case of parent to be absent for a few hours or for a day.
  • Baby Sitting during the evening, at home.




Updated on: 15/10/2019