Relocating your family to a different town can prove tiresome, let alone moving to a different country. There is not only the issue of a language barrier (in Catalunya the primary language is Catalan before Spanish) but you don’t have the support network of friends and family that you might otherwise have at home. Expat parents are sometimes unaware of the resources available.
Mother And Baby Groups
There are many meet-ups and support groups based in the city where English-speaking expat parents can meet. This is a great start for networking and socialising with other parents.
Meetup is a networking website dedicated to like-minded people looking to organise or find a local group with members who share the same interest as them. The website operates in over 180 countries around theworld and is very popular in Barcelona alone. The Barcelona New and Expecting International Moms Meetup was set up in order to bring together English-speaking mums living in Barcelona. This is great for parents to share their experience of their pregnancy and what to do with the babies in Barcelona.
There are a handful of private international schools within Barcelona that follow either the national English curriculum or a North American school curriculum. Most of them welcome students from the first year of primary school and teach right up until the age of 18. Here are a few schools to choose from:
St. Peter’s School offers an education from infants through until the age of 18. The pre-school is taught in English while the primary and secondary schools are taught in English, Spanish and Catalan.
The American School Barcelona offers a North American- based curriculum for children aged between 3 and 18. Most classes are taught in English but students can also receive instruction in Spanish or Catalan.
The local schools in Barcelona are free and conducted in Catalan rather than Spanish. Children are allocated a place according to where you live and are registered. Although the Catalan national curriculum doesn’t formally begin until the child is six years of age, however, most parents send their babies to a nursery (guarderias), which welcomes babies from the age of four months. From the age of three almost all children are at school (prescolar) full-time. The state schools encourage the education of their local culture, immersing the students in the traditions and history of Catalunya and expat children pick up and learn Castellano and Catalan much quicker in local schools compared to children who attend international schools.