Sending your children to school in Singapore will mean an additional expense on your monthly budget – therefore, it is good to have a clear idea of what it will cost you before you proceed to enroll your child. As the child of an expatriate, your child has the option of enrolling in either a public or private institution. However, do bear in mind that the cost difference for public and private institutions can be quite drastic.
Public schools are quite popular for majority of Singaporeans and foreigners too. The public school system in Singapore is quite competitive, and is considered internationally to be of a high standard. Within the public school system, it is compulsory for students to complete international certifications such as GCE O-level in secondary school, and A-Level in college.
The cost of studying in public school differs in accordance to whether your child is from one of the ASEAN countries or not. Please refer to the table below, based on the 2013 calendar year, for an indication of how much it would cost you to enroll your child in a public school here.
|MONTHLY COST AS PER 2013||SINGAPOREAN PR||INTERNATIONAL STUDENT FROM ASEAN COUNTRIES||INTERNATIONAL STUDENT FROM NON-ASEAN COUNTRIES|
|JUNIOR COLLEGES/CENTRALISED INSTITUTIONS||$187||$727||$1,027|
Source: Ministry of Education
Do note that the school fees changes every year, usually increasing over the years. It would be a good idea before your child’s enrollment that you check if he or she is eligible for a scholarship as that will help you with your monthly expenses. For some students on a scholarship, the government also offers a monthly stipend, which would help with your child’s daily expenses.
It is also important to know that the amount indicated above does not include services such as school transportation or cafeteria meals. These would be additional costs incurred by you.
As we’ve mentioned earlier, private schools are costlier, with the cost ranging from $10,000 to $15,000 per semester, depending on which private school you have selected. When it comes to enrolling for private schools, such as the Canadian International School or the ISS International School, amongst other institutions, you will also have to pay an initial application fee, which ranges from a few hundred to over a thousand dollars, and also a one time enrollment fee, which is usually a few thousand dollars. Private schools also sometimes may require additional expenses, on top of the school fees, for things like field trips and lockers.
We recommend that if you are interested in enrolling your child in a private school, you should carry out extensive research to ensure that the private school is reputable and accredited by the Singapore government and will benefit your child. Private schools, which usually follow an international American or European style curriculum, are recommended if you would rather your child mingle with students from the same country or with fellow international students from a diverse background.