Considerations When Choosing Schools and Making S1 Options

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There are many different secondary schools to choose from. While some have unique programmes and others may offer different educational paths, they all seek to maximise the potential of every child. Parents are encouraged to discuss with their child in choosing secondary schools and making their S1 options. They should consider schools holistically, based on the suitability of the learning environment given their child’s learning needs and interests, the school's ethos and whether the programmes and ethos cater to the interests and aptitudes of their child, amongst other factors.

Child’s personality, learning style, strengths and interests

Parents may wish to consider the strengths of each school and opt for schools with an environment, ethos and culture that resonate and best suit their child’s personality and learning style. Parents may also consider opting for schools with programmes (e.g. school distinctive programmes and CCAs offered) that will nurture their child’s strengths and interests and bring out the best in them.

Compatibility of child’s academic performance with schools

Parents may want to opt for schools that take in students who have a similar academic ability to that of their child’s.

Distance between school and home

Parents may want to consider schools near their home so that it will be more convenient for their child to travel to and from school.

Affiliated Schools

Some secondary schools have affiliated primary schools. Students of such primary schools who want to continue education in the affiliated secondary school must indicate that school as their first choice. This gives them priority for admission to that school. However, this priority for admission to affiliated secondary schools does not guarantee admission, as it is subject to the availability of places. Furthermore, some secondary schools may set additional qualifying criteria for admission of students from their affiliated primary schools.

Important Note:

For dual track schools offering both Integrated Programme (IP) and General Cambridge Examination (GCE) Ordinary (‘O’) Level Programme, affiliation considerations will only be given for the ‘O’ Level Programme. Affiliation will be given for the ‘O’ Level Programme if the student indicates:

  • ‘O’ Level Programme of the affiliated dual track school as the first choice; or
  • IP of the affiliated dual track school as the first choice and the ‘O’ Level Programme of the affiliated dual track school as the second choice

An example of the affiliation priority for dual track schools is shown. Assuming that Primary School A is affiliated to Secondary School A:

Scenario School Choices Made by Affiliated Primary School A Student Affiliation Priority?
1 1st Choice: Secondary School A – 'O' Level Programme Yes
2nd Choice: Secondary School A – Integrated Programme No
2 1st Choice: Secondary School A – Integrated Programme No
2nd Choice: Secondary School A – 'O' Level Programme Yes
3 1st Choice: Secondary School B – Integrated Programme No
2nd Choice: Secondary School A – 'O' Level Programme No

Special Assistance Plan (SAP) Schools

SAP schools nurture students to be proficient in both English Language (EL) and Chinese Language (CL), and to have a good understanding and appreciation of Chinese culture. Students who have taken both EL and CL at the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) may opt for SAP schools during the S1 Posting Exercise. Students posted to SAP secondary schools should take up Higher Chinese Language (HCL) (or CL, if available) so that they can participate meaningfully in SAP school programmes.

Special Programmes/Schemes 

Some secondary schools offer special programmes/schemes, e.g. Music Elective Programme, Art Elective Programme, Applied Subjects. If your child is interested in any such programmes, include schools that offer these programmes in your application. Refer to the Secondary School Education” booklet for more information on these programmes/schemes.

Special needs

Some secondary schools have specialised facilities and/or resources to support students with special needs (e.g. physical disabilities, hearing loss, visual impairment, and mild special educational needs like Autistic Spectrum Disorder [ASD], Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder [ADHD] and Dyslexia). Parents may wish to include such schools in their choices, if their child requires the specialised support.

You may wish to know:

For more information on the secondary schools and the programmes/schemes, you may refer to the S1 Information Booklet and the Secondary School Education Booklet.