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Frequently Asked Questions

I need childcare services for my child. How can I arrange for him to attend la ribambelle?

All you have to do is to call the administrative office in your area to learn about what is available and to get our registrations forms.

For London only: You can also register on our waitlist through the city of London ’s centralized waitlist by visiting www.familyinfo.ca/waitlist

Does la ribambelle have a waiting list? Is it long? How long will we have to wait before being assigned a place?


The waiting period time varies by centre and age group.

For London only: To ensure the briefest delays, it is important to register on the city of London ’s centralized the waitlist (see our homepage link or click on www.familyinfo.ca/waitlist) as soon as possible.  You will receive a confirmation acknowledging that you have been placed on the list, and you will be contacted as soon as a placement becomes available.

Is la ribambelle an English or French centre?

La ribambelle is a French first language child care centre open to all families of London and Sarnia. French is the official language spoken at all times at our centres, however we communicate with parents in both French and English.

If a child is not from a French-speaking background, can he still be registered at la ribambelle?

Of course! More than half of the children enrolled at la ribambelle are not from a French-speaking background. English-speaking parents or of other cultures choose la ribambelle so that their children can learn a second language or be prepared to attend a French first language schools or immersion school.

Does la ribambelle accept persons who are subsidized by the City?

Yes, la ribambelle welcomes parents who receive subsidies.

What is the registration fee at la ribambelle?

The fee varies depending on the program in which the child is enrolled. To obtain further information, please contact our administrative office in your area.

What programs are offered at la ribambelle?

La ribambelle offers programs for infants, toddlers, preschool aged children in London and Sarnia and pupils — before and after school programs in Sarnia only. All programs are offered full-time, with the exception of our preschool program where we can accept some part-time placements. Please consult our list of programs or contact the administrative office in London or Sarnia to obtain full details.

What programming is available at la ribambelle?

Based on the vision—“To prepare children aged 0 to 5 for life”—la ribambelle seeks to promote each child’s growth through development of the whole person in a safe, stimulating, French-speaking environment.

La ribambelle follows a democratic approach, i.e., child-centred education and active learning. We foster each child’s capacity to act on the basis of his own interests, strengths, and limits. Relations between educators and children are democratic; the two share in a partnership.

La ribambelle uses the program “Pacific Path.” Play is the form of expression and learning on which la ribambelle bases itself. Through playing, the child develops new skills, experiments, and develops physically, intellectually, and socially.

Do the educational staff at la ribambelle have qualifications in early years?

Each class of two groups has one qualified educator and another who is working toward qualification. La ribambelle strongly encourages its non-qualified educational staff to take the necessary training to obtain their diplomas. In addition, during the year la ribambelle offers training days and workshops to all educators.

How many children can each group have?

La ribambelle follows the ratios dictated by the Day Nursery Act of Ontario and accepts a maximum of three children per group of infants, five per group of toddlers, and eight per preschool-age group. Before and after school pupil groups may have up to 15 children.

At what age are children accepted into your groups?

Programs vary from one centre to another and from one region to the next, but are based on the following categories:

  • Infants: 0 to18 months
  • Toddlers: 18 to 30 months
  • Preschool aged children: 30 months to 5 years
  • Before and after school: 5 to 12 years (in Sarnia only)
Is it possible to visit a la ribambelle centre?

To visit a centre, all you need to do is make an appointment by calling the administrative office of your area. The centre supervisor will be happy to explain our programs and answer your questions.

What do we have to bring to la ribambelle for our children?

You will find a detailed answer to this question under “Tips & Advice” in our program sections and in our Parent Guide.

What kind of activities or outings does la ribambelle organize for the children?

Outings vary depending on the region, and are mainly offered to preschool age children. Toddlers are taken on outings once or twice, but only later in the year. Some activities can also be held at the centre itself, such as reptile demonstrations, parties, and theme days. All centres publish a monthly activity calendar.

Is it true that a child who has attended la ribambelle is better prepared than the others when he goes to a French first language school or Immersion school?

Based on comments from school principals and teachers at the two French School Boards in Southwestern Ontario, children who come from la ribambelle adapt to school much more easily. They are better prepared to function in a French-language environment and on average adapt more readily to the social and educational environment.

Is it possible to enroll in la ribambelle via the website?

In order to ensure better communication and avoid misunderstandings, la ribambelle does not accept online registration. We recommend that you call the administrative office in your area to obtain all the necessary information to enroll your child.

Do la ribambelle centres provide meals and snacks for the children? Can they accommodate children who have special dietary needs?

La ribambelle centres provide meals and snacks to all enrolled children, except for infants aged 0 to 12 months. We serve a snack in the morning, a meal at noon, and another snack in the afternoon.

It is forbidden to bring food into any of la ribambelle buildings. However, upon presentation of a doctor’s recommendation, special permission may be granted.

La ribambelle is an entirely nut and peanut-free environment. The centres respect the needs of children who have anaphylactic allergies and will adjust its menu accordingly.