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Anyone out there with older children?

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fivegomad
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Anyone out there with older children?

Postby fivegomad » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 6:44 am

Hi all,

We are in the early stages of planning to relocate to Singapore with three children and hopefully the dog too! All sounds quite straightforward, but it seems we are unusual in that our children are older and with varying needs. Our eldest is almost 16 and so, we are looking at sixth forms for him.

Can anyone give us any help, advice, suggestions or just some experience of moving with a child (young man really) this age? All the forums have loads of advice for those with young children just starting school.

Our younger Son is 13 and has Down's Syndrome. Again, it seems we are unusual here. I've looked at a few special needs schools and feel visits to them will give me a better idea. AGain, anyone who has relocated with a child with special needs out there?

Last - but not least - our daughter who is 8. She seems to be the easiest to find schooling info about and I think our biggest issue with her will be choosing the right school. Tanglin seems to be thrust at us from all levels and I've no doubt it's a great school. But there must be other good ones - with shorter wait lists?

Really the whole move rests on getting our eldest Son on board. For obvious reasons we are guessing he'll be against the idea completely. So before we turn his world upside down, we want to be clear in our heads we are making the right choice for all of us.

Feeling quite overwhelmed at the moment and whilst we do not want to rush in to anything, we do have the fact that we may have to speed things up slightly to get our eldest in to sixth form by the next school year - eek!

Any response, advice, suggestions, whatever will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

:???:

Dert42
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Postby Dert42 » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 9:47 am

just my personal point of view mind you...

we moved here when my son was 5, so he started kindergarten here.
had he even been in first grade, i would of thought harder about transplanting him.
I don't think i would transplant a high schooler if i could help it.
not only does he lose his network of friends, but he's thrust into a different curriculum where he may struggle. and i'm assuming you'll put him in an international american school.

My kids aren't special needs, so i'm not very informed of anything in this topic, but from what i observe, you'll have more support and resources for this in the states.

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the lynx
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Postby the lynx » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 9:50 am

For Down Syndrome, you can consult Down Syndrome Association (DSA) Singapore.

http://www.downsyndrome-singapore.org/

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x9200
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Postby x9200 » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 11:22 am

Dert42 wrote:My kids aren't special needs, so i'm not very informed of anything in this topic, but from what i observe, you'll have more support and resources for this in the states.


This is very wrong observation. If the kid needs OT, PT, ST or other therapy regularly it will cost a lot and the quality vary at best. Compare it to the States where there is a lot of state base support and the pool of available therapists is much larger.

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Postby PrimroseHill » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 11:28 am

x9200 wrote:
Dert42 wrote:My kids aren't special needs, so i'm not very informed of anything in this topic, but from what i observe, you'll have more support and resources for this in the states.


This is very wrong observation. If the kid needs OT, PT, ST or other therapy regularly it will cost a lot and the quality vary at best. Compare it to the States where there is a lot of state base support and the pool of available therapists is much larger.

I agree. Even though google turns out quite a few, I don't believe that it is well catered for here in SG. Its the same in UK as well, though the pool is bigger and its availability is there, state school catering to special needs in London aren't great, unless it is private. (I maybe wrong)

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Postby PNGMK » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 11:42 am

Can you hang on until the eldest is finished school?

Can you afford private care for the special needs child?

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Postby zzm9980 » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 1:26 pm

x9200 wrote:
Dert42 wrote:My kids aren't special needs, so i'm not very informed of anything in this topic, but from what i observe, you'll have more support and resources for this in the states.


This is very wrong observation. If the kid needs OT, PT, ST or other therapy regularly it will cost a lot and the quality vary at best. Compare it to the States where there is a lot of state base support and the pool of available therapists is much larger.


I think you're agreeing with Dert42.

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x9200
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Postby x9200 » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 2:48 pm

Damn. You are right. I need some therapy myself. My appology Dert42.

fivegomad
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Postby fivegomad » Tue, 14 Jan 2014 4:08 pm

Thanks for all your replies. We are actually in the UK. Yes, we would be looking at private schooling.
Again I ask, is there anyoone who has older children that can give some advice?

Dert42
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Postby Dert42 » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 8:24 am

no worries. i read that and was like... what?

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Postby PrimroseHill » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 9:53 am

fivegomad wrote:Thanks for all your replies. We are actually in the UK. Yes, we would be looking at private schooling.
Again I ask, is there anyoone who has older children that can give some advice?

Five, I replied to this thread but somewhere else

EmmaT
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Postby EmmaT » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 6:18 pm

Hi. We are a family who lived in Singapore, we are from the Uk.
Our kids went to Tanglin Trust school. And they loved it.
Our kids were in year 7 and 8 at the time.
I know you are asking for kids in their teens.
My hubby still works in Singapore ( and uk) and so the kids and I have been back a few times since we left. When we go back both our kids 16 and 17 years old have a great time. Public transport is easy and safe. They have more freedom in Singapore than they do in uk.

Tanglin trust is a great school. You'll find the kids will settle pretty quickly as everyone there, students and teachers are use to people coming and going.
School buses pick up at most condos too.

Regarding your younger son, and I'm not sure what type of education you are after but I use to work at Genesis School for Special Education. The building does look a little run down but the team are a very dedicated lot. The Head is from USA and will do anything for her students!

We moved into a landed house to start with and really didn't like it.
Once in an apartment we learnt to adapt. It is a smaller space but most condo have at least one swimming, usually a tennis court and some have a games room which will have table tennis etc. most have a gym which our son loves.
Check that the condo has a regular free bus to bus stops or MRT so your eldest son has some independence.

Regarding your dog, personally I'd try and find a home in uk. I know it sounds cruel. We got two dogs while in Singapore and the poor things really did suffer with the heat. They are now here with us in the uk and they love it.

I've probably rambled a lot but it is a big step. I think it was harder for my hubby and I to settle. The kids had school everyday. And made some great friends who they still face book and skype on a regular bases and we've been back in the uk for nearly 4 years.

Good luck and I'm happy to answer any questions if I can.

fivegomad
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Postby fivegomad » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 7:00 pm

Emma T, thank you so much for your advice, comments. They are all very welcome. Especially about the house. Coming fromthe Uk we are so used to looking at houses and wouldn't consider a 'flat' ever. But, having visited a number of people over in Singapore, the apartments (are these the same things as condos?) are always so spacious and the added ameneties I think make them a much better option. Although , have also seen bungalows in what looks like groups of expat places? Any suggestions of areas would be welcomed.
good tip about the bus routes too.
As for leaving the dog behind, I'mkind of thinking that too. But can't think about that too much as will break mine and the kids heart :(

Keep it coming, it's all welcome...

fivegomad
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Postby fivegomad » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 7:01 pm

Oh and wil look at Genesis - think that will be a long road of searching.

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Postby EmmaT » Wed, 15 Jan 2014 7:26 pm

Your welcome.
Districts really ends up being a personal preference.
We started in Yishun, away from everything but at the time my hubby was traveling to Malaysia a lot and we had moved from Papua New Guinea and wanted to be out of the city.
I came back to the uk after 4 years and my hubby took on a smaller flat in Singapore as he still had to be there pretty much full time for a while. He found a fantastic apartment on sentosa island. Many may say it's too far away from everything but there is a bus from the apartment to Vivo City one of the massive shopping malls, with cinemas, supermarkets etc. also MRT.
An apartment is easy to lock up and leave if you are not going to take on any home help. It sort of assumed most people will employee a live in helper. We were very anti to start with but employed a great lady and we soon learnt that it was actually her family in the Philippines that benefited more than any of us as she was able to send money home and get them set up with their own fishing boat for their family business. Gemma was lovely, and we still keep in touch, just in case we head back to Singapore, oh I wish!
I'm happy to ask my kids what they would think about heading back to Singapore to give you an idea from a teenagers point of view! I'm guessing they would jump at the chance!

Not sure if you are thinking of a car. It is very expensive to get on the road and you can drive on your uk licence for a year I think then you have to do a theory test to get a Singapore licence.
I hated driving and used public transport. My hubby liked driving, and would drive everywhere with the sat nav!

Hope this helps. And is not too much of an information over load!


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