Relocating to a new country with children means that you, as parents, will have to find a school to place your young ones in. While there are many schools in Singapore – which are quite evenly spread all over the island – it is also important to consider which public or private schools will help your children feel at home, rather than have them feel like the “outsider” foreign kid.
In Singapore, studying begins at the age of 6, where children begin to attend primary school for six years, and complete their Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE). Following that, they will attend secondary school for either four or five years, to complete their GCE ‘O’ Levels certification. Upon the completion of that qualification, students can choose to either spend two years at a junior college, to complete their GCE ‘A’ Levels, or three years at a polytechnic to pursue specialized diplomas. After receiving their ‘A’ Level certificates or diplomas, some will choose to pursue a degree at either a local or foreign university.
If you prefer to place your child in an international school, you may want to consider the following institutions:
One World International School
Your child would most likely be quite comfortable at this institution as a large majority of the students are from different parts of the world, and are often children of expatriate parents. One World International School offers education for students from ages 2 to 14, following the high school system. Most of the teachers at One World International School are also foreigners, which would benefit your child as they have a better understanding of the background and studies system your child may have come from.
Address: 696, Upper Changi Road East, Singapore 486826
Tel: +65 6542 2285
ISS International School
If you would like your child to pursue an International Baccalaureate program, then ISS International School may be of interest to you. Having been around for over 30 years in Singapore, ISS International School currently has two campuses – one for elementary and middle school students and the other for high school students. The institution has a strong focus on technology, and operates fully on an Apple Macintosh platform. ISS International School also places an emphasis on the arts and sports – integrating drama and theatre programs, badminton, rugby, and other exciting activities into their curriculum.
Elementary & Middle School
Address: 25, Patterson Road, Singapore 238150
Tel: +65 6235 5844
Address: 21, Preston Road, Singapore 109355
Tel: +65 6475 4188
For those expatriate parents who prefer their children integrate into a local schooling environment and would like to place them in public schools, you can do so by registering them through the Ministry of Education (MOE). However, do bear in mind that getting a placement in a public school may not be that easy, considering priority is given first to Singaporeans and Permanent Residents, and school admission is conducted in accordance to phases. International students seeking admission into public schools are considered as phase three applications, meaning, they will only be considered if there are additional spaces in the school. Alternatively, you can call the school of your choice directly to see if they are willing to take your child in. Do note that you will also have to make the necessary arrangements for a student visa depending on the status that your child holds in Singapore. For more information on the requirements needed for international students, you can refer to the Ministry of Education’s website.
Below is a list of public schools, both primary and secondary levels, which may have a sizable international student community from various countries.