The childcare system in Luxembourg
Luxembourg has aimed to increase investment in child allowances, made taxation more progressive, and increased parental leave to improve childcare in Luxembourg.
Though traditional family situations are still common, the increase in working women, divorce rates and number of single parents, has motivated policies on reconciliation of work and family life. There is also concern with measures needed to help integrate the children of expats.
The Luxembourg government has focused on childcare and early learning, in reaction to a shortage of facilities, the increase in working mothers and an increase in expat families. Early learning is available from the age of three. This is especially valuable for a foreigner, as it aids familiarisation with the language and culture. The early teaching option does not replace child care, and if child care is necessary, the parents must organise this outside teaching hours. You will be comforted to know that most districts have a childcare centre (maison relais) that looks after children. Their prices are very reasonable compared to crèches.
Most families in Luxembourg take advantage of family childcare providers, or nannies. A full-time provider works 25 hours or more. The family and the provider negotiate the fees but the provider will take the number of children and family income into account.
As for financial aid, there is a family allowance, introduced after the Second World War, covering children up to the age of 18. It is paid at the start of each year. The amount varies according to the number of children living in the household and their age. The allowance continues for students to the age of 27, as long as they are in fulltime education and live in Luxembourg.
The state also pays a schooling allowance in August each year for all kids above the age of six. To increase support to low-income families, child allowance policies and tax policies are often coordinated.
Maternity centres handle a child’s medical needs until the age of two, then they are looked after by doctors and finally by the school, which includes primary, secondary, higher and vocational levels. Children must be brought to the maternity centres for two check-ups after birth and four more before the age of two. The parents are given a card with the child’s results and they must supply this to future doctors. There is also a free vaccination program.
Terms (French – German)
Childcare: garde d’enfants – kinderbetreuung
Maternity: maternité – mutterschaft
Birth: naissance – geboren
- EU information page for parenting in Luxembourg
- Child policy in Luxembourg, Columbia University pages
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