Ignite: Switzerland FAQs

For more information or any other questions about Ignite: Switzerland, please email contact.ignite@dulwich.org with your question. 


First, there needs to be a registration of interest in the programme. Access for registration is available on the website. Once registered, you will receive more information about the programme, the application process, and you will be invited to a meeting at your child’s college in the new Academic Year. 

Students are required to write a letter to their Head of College explaining why they wish to go to Ignite: Switzerland and what they hope to gain from the experience. Once the Head of College has read all the letters, students will be invited for a panel interview. The letter will be used as the basis of the interview. 


Flights are not included in the fee for Ignite: Switzerland. Parents will need to pay for the flight although this will be organised by your child’s college.

Obtaining the appropriate visa is a parental responsibility but your college will give advice. You need to apply for the Schengen visa which allows visits to Switzerland for up to 90 days. This allows your child to study temporarily in Switzerland.

Your child will be accompanied by a teaching member of staff from his/her college.

Part of the Ignite: Switzerland programme is a one-week trip to see major sights in Switzerland.

You may pick your child up at the end of the 12 weeks, but this must be pre-arranged with the Head of the Ignite: Switzerland programme.

Your child will be accompanied by a teaching member of staff from his/her college.


Your child will be supported upon their return to their college to plan for any catch up that may be necessary. However, the Ignite programme has been designed to cover many of the humanities skills developed in Year 9 and iGCSE, and many of the transferable skills developed through this programme will also support in other curriculum areas.

Your child will be very busy with the Ignite: Switzerland curriculum so there will be no time available for the study of subjects outside this curriculum. The programme has been designed to ensure that students are broadening and deepening the skills required to make every success of Year 9 and iGCSEs, and beyond.

Before your child arrives in Switzerland, all information relating to his/her language ability will be shared. This will enable us to put your child into the right English group. We have a personalised approach so that each child’s learning pathway is clear.

Even though your child is only with us for 12 weeks, we will get to know your child well. As this is a boarding environment, staff will get to know your child in the classroom as well as out of it. They will be with your child at weekends, after school and in the dining room. It is important to us that your child will feel completely at home when enjoying the Ignite: Switzerland experience.

The academic programme is very important and we have paid particular attention to the quality of it. Also, as it is also a boarding experience for your child, they will experience the rigors of that environment. Boarding has strict rules on punctuality in addition to designated periods for studying and completing homework after school hours. Therefore, students have no excuses for coming late to class, forgetting to do their homework or leaving their homework at home!

Yes, all staff are qualified teachers and experienced. iGCSE is currently taught at the school so the teachers are familiar with this curriculum.

In the boarding environment, your child will learn to be more independent and responsible. Time and schoolwork needs to be balanced wisely, with extracurricular activities and spending time with their friends. In addition,  your child will begin to develop good study habits and discipline due to their strict studying schedules. Being in a boarding environment will also help with your child’s spoken English as they will need to converse in English during their leisure time as well as class time.


Every care will be taken of your child and there may be times when they miss you. This is all normal and they will have staff on hand to help them through those times. It will be important that their parents also support and understand that this is normal and that it is important to work through these emotions.

Parents are asked not to visit whilst their child is at the school as it can be unsettling for the child. Also, part of going away on this experience is to gain independence, self-reliance and resilience. Parents are very welcome to come to the school to collect their child at the end of the 12 weeks. This needs to be pre-arranged with the Head of the Ignite Programme.

We recognise that you will want to hear first-hand what an amazing time your child is having so we strongly encourage you to have a set time to talk with your child once a week via WhatsApp/WeChat/Facetime. But, your child will be very busy so there will need to be some flexibility on your part. Please take into account the time difference.

If your child’s birthday is during their time on the Ignite: Switzerland programme, it will be celebrated with a cake and we will help them feel special for the day. There is no need for parents to order cakes.

To help you feel connected, a dedicated website with photographs and videos of the week’s activities will be uploaded for parents to see. We will upload as many photos and videos as possible so you can feel part of the experience too. The website will be updated every Monday morning (Swiss time) with each day’s learning and activities.

All contact details for the school and the staff will be given to you before your child leaves for Switzerland.


No. Your child’s place will be kept at their college and instead of paying fees to them you will pay fees to Ignite: Switzerland.

No. Your child’s place will be kept for them so they can return to their college after the Ignite: Switzerland experience.

Once your child has passed the interview and been offered a place, you will be given the details of the bank to pay the Ignite: Switzerland fee.

Yes, they can. Instead of paying school fees for your child’s college, they will pay directly into the school in Switzerland for the term that your child will be there.

If you attend a Dulwich College in China you can still benefit from this discount. However, the 5% annual fee discount will not apply for Dulwich Colleges outside China.

A credit note will be created for one term from the college your child attends. It will be refunded through the way the fee was originally paid, either directly to your company or to your bank account.

All education, boarding and food is included in the fee. Your child will also have a week’s trip in Switzerland, which will also be included.


Switzerland is renowned for its excellent medical training and hospitals utilising the latest technologies, guaranteeing quality care that is recognised throughout the world. We are lucky to work in close proximity with the local doctor, and are able to care for our students in a prompt and timely fashion. The school benefits from a wide network of health specialists (dentists, orthodontists, dermatologists, ophthalmologists and psychologists), helping us provide the best possible care for the students.


We will let you know if your child requires any dental or medical treatment.

Fortunately, Switzerland has an excellent healthcare system so your child will be well looked after. If there is a medical emergency, we will contact you immediately and keep you updated so you know what is happening. Our staff are very experienced and will look after your child.

Your child will have access to the HIF school counsellor.

The school has strict health and hygiene management procedures in place to mitigate the risk that COVID-19 and other illnesses represent. There are of course no guarantees but every step possible is taken to keep your child safe.

All students must be fully vaccinated. All vaccinations are currently recognised, although this could be subject to change.

Security & Insurance

Our primary responsibility is to keep your child safe; as a result, our campus is fitted with a number of CCTV cameras and alarms.

It is mandatory to have travel insurance as this covers health insurance as well. Switzerland has excellent medical care, but it is expensive. Switzerland is part of the Schengen Zone. As such, your travel insurance for Switzerland has to comply with Schengen Visa insurance requirements, meaning:

  • It must cover at least €30,000 for medical treatment and evacuation.
  • It must be valid through the entire Schengen Zone.
  • It must be valid through the entire duration of your trip to Switzerland or the Schengen Zone.



Before your child arrives in Switzerland, you will be asked to provide all important health information for your child. Our chef is used to providing specialist meals for students at the school already. Every care will be taken to meet the needs of your child.

Your child will receive 4 meals a day. Healthy snacks are also available throughout the day.

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