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Which local schools do expat kids attend?

Interested to get your child into a local Primary School? Discuss the opportunities here.
EEL
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Post by EEL » Tue, 01 Mar 2011 11:59 pm

we have just arrived and were hoping to get our son into a local school. I tried all the ones MOE said had vacancies plus some others and I could find no spaces left for either P2 or P3. I must admit I didn't try a few which were right on the outskirts of the island as the commute time for my husband would mean he would not be able to spend very much time with our children before they have to go to bed.

So we have decided we will have to pay the International School fees. (Home schooling - for various reasons is not an option).

I don't know if P1 is easier to get into - but based on my experience my advice is to apply to quite a few schools as you may not get your first choice.

Good luck - we would really have liked our son to attend a local school so I hope you manage to get into one.

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Post by nikros » Sat, 07 Jan 2012 2:04 pm

My son is attending Yuhua Primary School now P2 already. It is very low ranking scholl. We are not citizens and not PR.
A year ago i was quite disappointed when we did not have a place in Jurong Primary, which is much better. So we started Yuhua Primary and standed in waiting list for Jurong Primary. After 6 monthes we get a call from Jurong Primary that there are place there for my son. But.... my son started to cry "I don't want another school, i want mine-Yuhua Primary school."
He liked the school very much.
Well, he remained in Yuhua primary school.

And after 1 year i'm very happy about his progress in math and chinese. my son like his school and eager to participate in all school activities. There are a lot of extra-classes in school for P1: chinese reading, english reading, art. This year (P2 level) kids will have a swimming classes.

So do not afraid of low ranking school. The difference in academic level between "good" schools and "bad" schools in Singapore is minor. All school teach the same program, and only your kid's learning skills will influence his knowledge.
MOE insists tht all school in Singapore are the same. All of them gets the same finance, teachers spread between schoools randomly. And only difference between high ranking schools and low ranking school is that " son of minister of ... is attending .... school.
Last edited by nikros on Fri, 24 Feb 2012 7:59 pm, edited 3 times in total.

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boffenl
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Post by boffenl » Sat, 07 Jan 2012 5:34 pm

+++1 :)

Glad your son is having a good experience!

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sundaymorningstaple
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Post by sundaymorningstaple » Sat, 07 Jan 2012 6:42 pm

+1

Virtually an identical copy of the stuff I've said many time here over the years. Good to hear it's all working out. If a child is happy in his school, it makes it all the more easier as well. ;-)

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Post by batikjolie » Tue, 24 Jan 2012 7:36 am

Ditto. My son goes to a local kindergarten and he is very very happy there! Surprisingly in contrast to our old kindergarten back in Germany where he was thrown out from school, I repeat, thrown out from school because he was too loud! Imagine the amount of tears I produced when this happens. I was very very disappointed with the German education system....and here in Singapore my son is thriving and happy and we are soo pround of him. He is now in K2 and doing very well...we too are trying to get him to Tanjong Katong but heard that it is 'hot seats' there....so best of luck for everybody.Singapore has one of the best education system in the world (I mean...the standard is soo much higher than in Germany and my son seems to benefit from it. Me too are getting crying from my son saying '....mommy I want to go school!' in public holidays! He must love his school a lot....

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mummy mantras
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Post by mummy mantras » Sun, 29 Jan 2012 10:50 pm

batikjolie wrote:
Me too are getting crying from my son saying '....mommy I want to go school!' in public holidays! He must love his school a lot....
Ha! Ha! My girls do that too! :D

They go to a local preschool and they love it so much that if they stay at home for more than 2 days at a stretch, they just beg to go back to school!

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Post by fristromcan » Thu, 16 Feb 2012 6:15 pm

My kid started P1 in Jan this year. We intended to put her into the closest school (~10 walk from home) in phase 3. Unfortunately, she got balloted out (~70 kids going for 7 spaces), and she is now going to a school some 16km away. It is the closest school we can find a space for her, and it is not a "brand-name" school.

School bus picks her up at 6:15am, if she is taking the bus.
School finishes 1:30pm, takes about an hour to get home, so she starts lunch at 2:30pm.

For the first 2 weeks, there were no homework. From the 2nd week onwards, there are homework every 2/3 days, which takes anything from 10 min to over an hour to finish, on top of weekly spelling tests. With the long daily commuting and homework, my kid is struggling at school.

I have talked to her kindergarten friends, and most of them have no homework, only the weekly spelling. I have called a couple of school close by but all have long waiting list, so there is no chance moving my kid anytime soon.

We have been living in Sg for a long time, and it is getting more and more difficult for non-local to get into local schools. If you plan to go this way, think very carefully which area you are going to reside.

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Post by Tamama » Tue, 21 Aug 2012 1:10 pm

My two cents would be: do check with MOE whether they have brand new schools in the coming year before you make the move. Usually brand new schools are not yet gain their propularity so local parents are less likely to try at their priority. So we foreigners may have a chance to enroll our kids successfully.
At 2010 we came to Singapore with our 6 and 3 yr old at that time. We put our elder one into International School for a few months and MOE let us know there would be a new school in the following year so we enrolled our elder one there. The school was so new so every grade was still having lots of space. Our elder one started from primary one there. And she has great time there. And actually she has quite a number of friends are same expat kids, making the school very international.
This year she is in primary two. The space are filling up as I heard about primary 1 is full house. But some months ago my girl told me that she has a new classmate. So for other forms may be still a few space left.
Well we resided at Toa payoh when we came and commuting to her school took 30 min (we drive). So back and forth is an hour. It was bad sometimes. If taking school bus they said she would need to catch the bus at 630am but the school starts at 8am.
So recently we moved to a place where is a bit nearer to her school (my hubby said it is not exactly nearer but with shorter commuting time), now every morning the drive time is about 13-15min. A big difference.
So new comers do check with MOE for the new schools so you can prepare better for your house hunting or everything. :wink:

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Post by malcontent » Wed, 29 Aug 2012 7:06 pm

When I saw the phase 3 openings today, I was like... FRANKLIN DELANO!!! SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! Talk about slim pickins!!

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Post by ScoobyDoes » Thu, 30 Aug 2012 1:35 pm

malcontent wrote:When I saw the phase 3 openings today, I was like... FRANKLIN DELANO!!! SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! Talk about slim pickins!!

Ph.3 application numbers have been overwhelming today.

It will be a tough couple of months ahead for many parents and families as the MoE posts kids most likely to opposite sides of the island miles away from work or current accomodation.
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'

SIR Stirling Moss OBE

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Post by ScoobyDoes » Fri, 31 Aug 2012 5:30 pm

To follow this one up, and for reference.....

Ph.3 had a total of 2079 spaces and at the end of application day, 2041 applications had been made.

Unfortunately, this doesn't tell the whole story of where ballots are required and where space is available. Basically the whole of Central and Western districts were over subscribed, some like Jurong, vastly.

The only areas with any kind of space left at the end of Ph.3 were the likes of Pasir Ris, Choa Chu Kang, Hougang, Pungol, Sembawang, Seng Kang and Yishun - those 'a little bit out there'.

Forget about finding space in Toa Payoh, Bkt Timah, Jurong, Queenstown, Woodlands, Clementi, Geylang, Marine Parade, Bishan or Bedok.

For the hundreds of kids unlucky in a Central or Western district ballot, a quite serious move might be in order to the N.East.
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'

SIR Stirling Moss OBE

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Post by movingtospore » Thu, 20 Sep 2012 3:46 pm

Hey ScoobyDoes did you get a spot in a local school? I was watching some expat kids walk home from the school in our neighbourhood today (an in demand one) and wondering what the heck their parents did to get them in there. Am liking the International School we're at now much better than the old one but not liking the price tag...

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Post by ScoobyDoes » Fri, 21 Sep 2012 9:48 am

movingtospore wrote:Hey ScoobyDoes did you get a spot in a local school?

http://forum.singaporeexpats.com/ftopic89200.html
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'

SIR Stirling Moss OBE

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Post by ScoobyDoes » Wed, 26 Sep 2012 11:41 am

ScoobyDoes wrote: For the hundreds of kids unlucky in a Central or Western district ballot, a quite serious move might be in order to the N.East.

I hate quoting myself but......

A friend in the Bkt Timah area had applied at their nearest primary, about a 10-min walk away from where they live.

Unfortunately the applications FAR exceeded the number of spaces, which where in the single digits. As I had mentioned earlier those failing in a ballot would likely face quite a serious move or commute and for our friend, MOE posted their daughter to Sengkang.

According to my mapping application, to get to the school via bus/mrt it requires a Travel Time around 45min plus a Walk/Wait time of 35min which, with a ~7:15am start at local primary means at least a 5:30am alarm call everyday.

Pity the lease on their apartment doesn't expire for about a year!
'When Lewis Hamilton wins a race he has to thank Vodafone whereas in my day I used to chase the crumpet. I know which era I'd rather race in.'

SIR Stirling Moss OBE

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Post by nikros » Thu, 27 Sep 2012 12:10 pm

I know at least one scholl in Jurong, that has a lot of vacancies every year. It's Yuhua Primary school (close to Chinese Garden MRT). The school bus from this school gets Clementi, West Coast and Boon Lay.
P1 and P2 pupils have afternoon classes, so you don't need to wake up so early.

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