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After court decision Fears raised over future of ski camps

Pupils arrive for winter sports camp

Pupils arrive for winter sports camp

(Keystone)

A snow sports lobby group has raised fears over the future of ski camps for children, following a Federal Court decision to limit the amount parents must contribute to camps and excursions.

“Excursions and (snowsports) camps will soon have to be cancelled if the contribution to the costs is reduced,” said Snowsport Initiative Switzerlandexternal link (GoSnow), in a statement released on Friday.

“The Snowsport Initiative Switzerland is dismayed that the now successful measures to promote snow sports at schools, which are supported by parliament, have been put at risk by this Federal Court decision.”

The Federal Court decisionexternal link, which was made public on December 29, states that schools may only ask parents for between CHF10-CHF16 a day during obligatory excursions and camps. Asking for CHF200-CHF300, is too much, the court said. The lower amount covers what parents would normally spend on their children if they were at home, it ruled.

The decision thus repealed a change in the school law in canton Thurgau that would have permitted asking parents for higher contributions for excursions and camps. The court decreed that this went against the right to a free primary education as set out in the Swiss constitution.

Canton Thurgau said earlier this monthexternal link that it would create “a new legal basis” for asking for parental contributions this month.

The school ski camp, in the first term of the new year, is a tradition in Switzerland, but attendance has been falling in the past years. The GoSnow initiative was created as a way of countering this trend. It has the support of the federal government, cantons and main snow sports associations.

+ Read more about the decline of youth skiing

swissinfo.ch/ilj

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