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Family-friendly towns around Frankfurt

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Hello! My husband and I and our 2 kids (ages 3 & 7 ) will be moving to the Frankfurt area Jan. 1, 2008 and I am looking for advice on places to live. Others have suggested Bad Soden, Konigstein and Kronberg. Any opinions on these or other towns in the area would be greatly appreciated. My husband and I will be working in Darmstadt and the kids will be attending FIS. We would like to keep everyone's commute to a minimum so somewhere in between the two locations is probably best. Other than that we would like to be near other expats with small kids.

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Ok well I think a commute from the Taunus area for both parents is going to prove very difficult. My boyfriend commutes from Frankfurt to Darmstadt which is much closer and it takes him 40 minutes on a good day. So from Kongstein or Kronberg it is going to be longer. Also consider you will both be unable just to pop to the school in Oberursel during the day if you need to.

 

If you are both working I'd suggest living in Darmstadt. Why do the children have to go to FIS? Why not send them to local schools? You will be very surprised at how quickly they will pick up German. Otherwise there is an international school in Darmstadt but the name escapes me at the moment.

 

Darmstadt would also be the best place to meet other expat families through the various social clubs and people at ESA/ESOC/Eumetsat.

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Ok well I think a commute from the Taunus area for both parents is going to prove very difficult. My boyfriend commutes from Frankfurt to Darmstadt which is much closer and it takes him 40 minutes on a good day. So from Kongstein or Kronberg it is going to be longer. Also consider you will both be unable just to pop to the school in Oberursel during the day if you need to.

 

If you are both working I'd suggest living in Darmstadt. Why do the children have to go to FIS? Why not send them to local schools? You will be very surprised at how quickly they will pick up German. Otherwise there is an international school in Darmstadt but the name escapes me at the moment.

 

Darmstadt would also be the best place to meet other expat families through the various social clubs and people at ESA/ESOC/Eumetsat.

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Thanks so much. No one has ever mentioned another international school in Darmstadt as an option. Very helpful!!

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I looked on the internet and saw the State International School Seeheim-Jugenheim in Darmstadt. Is this the International School in Darmstadt?

Does anyone have an opinion about the school? Most expats I know in the area sent their kids to Frankfurt International but this seems like a long drive from Darmstadt.

Appreciate any comments about options for International Schools in Darmstadt.

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Yes that is the school I meant. A friend of mine is a teacher there. I couldn't really comment on the quality of the school. If you are staying for a long period of time though I would really recommend they go to German school. To be honest I cannot see how the one in Darmstadt would be any better or worse than the FIS.

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There is a BIG difference between the two schools. FIS is over 40 years old, has an international baccalaureate, and is considered one of the best IS in Europe. I did work at FIS and live in Oberursel for 5 years. Frankly, I've never heard of this school in Darmstadt. I know there is a newer (last 2 years) IS in Heidelburg, also with more international status.

 

Darmstadt is a great town, but it's a long commute for young children. My definite favorite would be Koengstein- beautiful and tons of expats living there (including classmates of your children). A drive for me from Oberursel to Darmstadt would take me 50 mins. So you might be looking at 40-45 mins.

 

Good luck & let me know if I can help you with any more specifics.

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Thanks so much for all the information. You said you had a friend who used to work at the Darmstadt International School. Would she be able to answer any questions about the quality of the school?

 

I agree FIS is likely a better school. We have our kids on the waiting list but we do not know they will be admitted. Also, if the Darmstadt school is "okay" and the commute is much better, it may be better overall situation for the family.

 

Appreciate any additional info and opinions on the Darmstadt International School.

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Hi - we live near Budingen and it takes us about 45-50mins to commute west to Frankfurt. ( My wife is a teacher at one of the International Schools). Quiet and rural with some pretty nearby towns. Worth considering.

 

Dale

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Hi, I personally would rule out Konigstien or Kronberg. I live in the area and we have friends in Darmstadt and personally I would not want to commute that distance every day. You'd be looking at around an hour travelling at peak times each way. Both are very nice places to live though, very friendly and family orientated.

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Thanks so much for all the information. You said you had a friend who used to work at the Darmstadt International School. Would she be able to answer any questions about the quality of the school?

 

I agree FIS is likely a better school. We have our kids on the waiting list but we do not know they will be admitted. Also, if the Darmstadt school is "okay" and the commute is much better, it may be better overall situation for the family.

 

Appreciate any additional info and opinions on the Darmstadt International School.

What does "okay" exactly mean?

 

Well the girl I know there is a teacher and am sure she will say that the quality of teaching is excellent.

 

Sorry I do not understand the debate of the 'quality' of a school very much. I grew up in a socially deprived area and went to one of the worst schools in Wales. We were bullied and the teaching quality was probably awful. But I still came out with all GCSE's and A levels at A-B grades. School is what you make of it in my book.

 

But as I said if you are staying for a long time then German school is a better option.

 

Oh and as far as I am aware the Darmstadt school is new and only a primary school (7-11 year-olds).

 

Of course maybe my opinion will change if I ever have children...

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Hi Everyone,

 

I was wondering if someone out there has some advise for me. My Husband (German) and myself (Canadian) and our two year old daughter are being transferred from Düsseldorf area to Taunusstein. I was wondering if anybody has a suggestion for a town to live in nearby. My husband is willing to drive half an hour to work. There are so many little towns in that area that it would be great for some input. Of course it would be great if it was also a child friendly area.

 

Thanks in advance!

 

Sherrie

 

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