Most children in Spain begin primary school at three, although it is not obligatory until the age of six. Consequently, most nursery schools cater only to children up to three years old, although there are a few exceptions.
Many of the city's international schools offer nursery care. For a complete list of these schools see here.
PUBLIC NURSERY SCHOOLS
Public nursery schools (Escola Municipal Bressol) accept babies from the age of five months and cost around €280 per month including a full day and lunch. Competition is fierce for places and the application process takes place in May. The assigning of places works according to a points system. Points are given for various concepts such as living in the neighbourhood and for single parent and low-income families. See the Ajuntament website for more details.
ENGLISH-SPEAKING NURSERY SCHOOLS
Peek a Boo
Peek a Boo is a space designed for babies and children aged 12 months to three years. They provide small classes and individualised attention in a fun and creative environment. They also offer healthy food, an arts corner, a stimulating playground, a library with a carefully selected collection of books for all ages and a terrace garden. Languages spoken are English, Catalan and Spanish.
Santaló 126. Tel. 934613045 www.peekaboo-centre.com
This non-profit association is based on the German system and caters to children aged 10 months to five years. Located in the Barrio Gótico there is a strong focus on nature and ecology, and meals are made from only organic food. BCN Kinder offers a flexible timetable, personalised adaptation process and a high ratio of carers to children.
Belafila 4. Tel. 93 268 2578 www.bcn-kinder.org
This Sarriá-based offers a trilingual (English/Spanish/Catalan) nursery and pre-school from one to five years. The emphasis is on offering a stimulating early-learning environment with a personalised development programme for each child.
Noah's Ark - Esplugues de Llobregat
This bilingual (English and Spanish) nursery is located in a large house in Esplugues. They accept children from four months old to three years and have a high ratio of carers to children. The facilities are bright and spacious with 600m of outdoor space.
Ferran 74. Esplugues de Llobregat. Tel. 93 473 5371 www.noahsark.es
This progressive international daycare centre in Gràcia offers flexible and part-time options. The space is bright and airy and all food is organic. It is run by British mother-of-three Sarah Yandell.
Calle Mozart 10 bajos, Tel. 93 368 7834 or 661 469 419, www.theplayhousebcn.net
Little Ducky - Sant Cugat
A trilingual (Catalan, English and Spanish) family-run nursery based in Sant Cugat for babies and toddlers from nine months. Groups are small and they encourage a multicultural environment, using English in all activities.
C/ Joan XXIII Nº 31, Sant Cugat, Tel. 93 589 1704, www.littleducky.com