Singapore Expats Forum

local primary schools

Discuss various schooling options for your children here.
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boffenl
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Postby boffenl » Fri, 28 Oct 2011 8:03 am

Hi Dalia,

The next few weeks will be decisive. Most parents wait and make their decision as late as possible--up to the third week of December. I'd say your son still has a good shot. Keep visiting schools and let us know when and where he lands.

Good luck!

Dalia
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Postby Dalia » Fri, 28 Oct 2011 12:03 pm

boffenl wrote:Hi Dalia,

The next few weeks will be decisive. Most parents wait and make their decision as late as possible--up to the third week of December. I'd say your son still has a good shot. Keep visiting schools and let us know when and where he lands.

Good luck!


thank you
This is just what I needed to hear. I think he would benefit from going to the local school, it's something I really want for him.
Croatia

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Postby boffenl » Fri, 28 Oct 2011 1:22 pm

I'd suggest you keep calling the two or three schools you'd most like him to attend. Or e-mail the Principal. Only through your continued interest will they know you're serious.

Good luck--I'm sure it will end up well.

Dalia
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Postby Dalia » Wed, 28 Dec 2011 12:26 am

I would just like to report that we GOT IN !!!!

I was so happy that I cried :oops: :D
The school is not very popular. The top PSLE score for this year was 160 I think (best this year overall was 180 something and best ever was 194). I'm anxious to see how my son will fare. He is very bright and understands most things well, but he is a terrible test taker, he makes a lot of careless mistakes.

I'm so glad I don't have to home-school him anymore since English is not my first language and we have reached the point where I had to either look online for some help or my son would correct me, how embarrassing is that?!? He would often say, "That's OK mom, parents can make mistakes too. " How could I lecture him about his careless mistakes after that? :roll:

So anyway, yay for us :D

As for everyone else who is still waiting, we just just got in and there were some other people coming in after us too. So it is not over just yet, there is still more time. Talk to the front desk person, ask how many kids there are on the waiting list, get friendly and try to find out if you stand a chance. Some were very talkative, so I have found out that you have the most chance at the less popular school closest to your home.
Croatia

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boffenl
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Postby boffenl » Wed, 28 Dec 2011 8:32 am

That is fantastic news! Congratulations to you and your son. I'll be thinking of him and all the new kids on January 3! It does pay to keep in close contact with the school closest to you geographically--plus they then know you're serious!

Have you bought his books yet? We just went to Popular last night to get the Primary 5 books for my daughter--they were so helpful!

Good luck and do keep us posted!

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Postby Dalia » Wed, 28 Dec 2011 1:28 pm

Books and uniforms are on sale in the school itself. It was 5 cents more than popular, so we just went with the school to make sure we got everything right. I also have to send an e-mail to the PTA president to introduce myself and ask if I could join them.
Croatia

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Postby boffenl » Wed, 28 Dec 2011 1:46 pm

My daughter's school store is now a Popular shop--good for us since the prices seem to have gone down since last year for books! Don't forget to get his nametags!

Good luck--so happy for you both!

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public / private / dependant pass / location... ???

Postby VivianeL » Wed, 04 Jan 2012 7:12 pm

boffenl wrote:I'd suggest you keep calling the two or three schools you'd most like him to attend. Or e-mail the Principal. Only through your continued interest will they know you're serious.

Good luck--I'm sure it will end up well.


Hi Boffeni
Thanks for all your inputs! There's one thing you haven't replied to Dalia, though... : is it possible at all to live close to one school and go to an other ? You mentioned the dependant pass... Do all public school accept students on a dependant pass ?
As we're coming next week to look for a house, we still have no idea in what area we'll end up !...
I have an appointment with ISS - only private school with current availabilities - and from what I've been able to perceive, a good size school with good parent/staff relationship and all important stuff....

What would you recommend ? Should I just pick a few schools to visit then see where we end up ... it feels weird to go with just one option (not even...) in which case : where should I start ? Thanks for your help. - oh and I've posted a new topic ... my girls will have to start in April, as we're moving end of March... adding to the nightmare ! :?
VFEL

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Postby boffenl » Thu, 05 Jan 2012 10:44 am

Hi Vivianel! Yes, it's possible to live close to one school and go to another. Once your child takes the MOE exam and passes (assuming they're NOT a primary one new entrant), then you are assigned a school. Theoretically you could live in Clementi and be assigned a school acros the island in Tampines--but very, very unlikely. Everyone I know of or have heard from was assigned a school very close to their home (ie their registered address).

Yes, again theoretically all schools accept dependent pass holders. But DP holders are at the bottom of the list and usually have to ballot for the school spots for primary one exercise.

I know ISS very well. Great folks there, nice and small. I'm sure you'll enjoy your visit.

Good luck!

Dalia
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Postby Dalia » Sun, 08 Jan 2012 10:46 pm

Just one more thing, as of this year you can't walk to the local school and ask if they have any spots left. There will be two MoE tests each year and your girls will have to sit for one of them to get a place in any local school.

My case was a bit different since I was able to approach local schools, but this is what I did when picking a place to live - first I looked at the balloting history on the Kiasu website, and possible open spaces for this year. Then I made a list of schools that my son was most likely to get in and avoided those I thought would have the most foreigners on the waiting list, like Clementi's Pei Tong (the list is super long in that school since the word got out they have a lot of DP's), or all in Bukit Batok and Bedok. We also called MoE for help and got an officer who was working on our case. I don't think he was able to do much, but he called the schools we listed for him and confirmed that we are on a waiting list and I guess assured the schools that we really want the spot.

As for the test, it is not easy and you can't just land and go for a test the next day. You need Singaporean textbooks. I'm positive you could go through the books with your children in as little as two weeks, but it would be better to plan for some more time. Like, my son has never heard of a number bond before.
Croatia

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Postby Dalia » Sun, 08 Jan 2012 11:03 pm

We have our first test tomorrow - English spelling and dictation. I'm both nervous and excited. Hope he does well. We got the list of the words to practice, but I don't know how strict the teacher will be and how fast he needs to write. Wonder if his writing will be up to the standard, the words "neat" and "tidy" are not in his dictionary.
Croatia


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