Voters have decided that toddlers at Zürich kindergartens will only learn Swiss German in future, instead of the standard language spoken in Germany.

 

"/> Voters have decided that toddlers at Zürich kindergartens will only learn Swiss German in future, instead of the standard language spoken in Germany.

 

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EDUCATION

Standard German banned from Zurich preschools

Voters have decided that toddlers at Zürich kindergartens will only learn Swiss German in future, instead of the standard language spoken in Germany.

 

The outcome of the Sunday referendum was welcomed by the “Yes to dialect in the kindergarten” group that argued for the change.

Currently, one third of the teaching in kindergartens is carried out in the dialect, while one third is in the so-called “High German” and one third is decided by the teachers.

Promoters of the initiative argue that learning standard German as toddlers did not prove to pave the way for better grades at school. They also say it is beneficial for foreign kids growing up in Switzerland, who can then integrate better into Swiss society. 

The issue of using Swiss German instead of High German is a sensitive one in a country where over 60 percent of the population speaks it.

Swiss German, a mainly spoken dialect, is almost unintelligible in most of Germany and remains a strong element of the Swiss identity. High German, which remains the language of official communications, is used in writing and on television. Switzerland has three other national languages, French, Italian and Rumantsch.
  

Reports said a similar proposal was rejected by Basel voters over the weekend.

ZURICH

Swiss rail to close ticket counters in Zurich, Bern, Vaud, Ticino and Zug

Switzerland’s Federal Railways (SBB) will be removing the ticket counter from nine stations in the cantons of Zurich, Vaud, Bern, Zug and Ticino

Swiss rail to close ticket counters in Zurich, Bern, Vaud, Ticino and Zug

The SBB made the announcement on Wednesday, saying the decision was made due to a lack of demand. 

Instead, commuters will need to buy tickets from automated machines. 

In the canton of Zurich, the ticket stations in Dietlikon, Hinwil, Kloten, Männedorf and Oberwinterthur will be closed. 

In neighbouring Zug, Cham’s ticket counter will be closed, while the Herzogenbuchsee station in Bern will also go fully automated. 

MAPS: The best commuter towns when working in Zurich

In Latin Switzerland, Pully in Vaud and Biasca in Ticino will see their ticket counters closed. 

The SBB told Swiss news outlet Watson that approximately 95 percent of ticket sales are now made via self-service machines or online. 

The advent of navigation apps has meant the need for personal advice on directions and travel has fallen, particularly in smaller areas or stations with lower traffic. 

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