Last Updated: 16 July 2021

Types of schools

Learn about the different types of schools in our education system, including their key offerings and fees.

There are 5 types of schools in our education system:

Government schools, including autonomous schools

Government schools offer high quality education such as unique electives, applied subjects and student development programmes at standardised fees.

Some government schools have an autonomous status. This means that they follow the national syllabus, but offer a wider range of programmes that enhance your child’s learning experience and develop their talents.

Some government schools are also Special Assistance Plan (SAP) schools that are committed to nurturing bilingual and bicultural students who are immersed in the Chinese language and culture, and are equipped with a global outlook.

Key offering Standardised fees and curriculum.
Fees Primary schools:
  • Singapore Citizens: $6.50 to $13 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $205 to $218 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $465 to $478 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $775 to $788 per month.
Secondary schools:
  • Singapore Citizens: $5 to $25 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $380 to $400 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $780 to $800 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $1,450 to $1,470 per month.
Junior colleges and Millennia Institute:
  • Singapore Citizens: $6 to $33 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $460 to $487 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $1,040 to $1,067 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $1,800 to $1,827 per month.
Students studying in autonomous schools also need to pay autonomous school fee ranging from $3 to $18 per month. Use our school fees checker to find out the monthly school fees for your child’s school.
Scholarships and financial assistance  Singapore Citizens may be eligible for:
See the full list of:

Government-aided schools, including autonomous schools

Government-aided schools are schools set up by various community organisations to cater to the educational needs of their respective communities. They maintain the same education standards as Government schools and charge standardised fees.

Some government-aided schools have an autonomous status. This means that they follow the national syllabus, but offer a wider range of programmes that enhance your child’s learning experience and develop their talents.

Some government-aided schools are also Special Assistance Plan (SAP) schools that are committed to nurturing bilingual and bicultural students who are immersed in the Chinese language and culture, and are equipped with a global outlook.

Key offering Standardised fees and curriculum.
Fees Primary schools:
  • Singapore Citizens: $6.50 to $13 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $205 to $218 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $465 to $478 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $775 to $788 per month.
Secondary schools:
  • Singapore Citizens: $5 to $25 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $380 to $400 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $780 to $800 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $1,450 to $1,470 per month.
Junior colleges and Millennia Institute:
  • Singapore Citizens: $6 to $33 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $460 to $487 per month.
  • ASEAN International students: $1,040 to $1,067 per month.
  • Non-ASEAN International students: $1,800 to $1,827 per month.
Students studying in autonomous schools also need to pay autonomous school fee ranging from $3 to $18 per month. Use our school fees checker to find out the monthly school fees for your child’s school.
Scholarships and financial assistance  Singapore Citizens may be eligible for:
See the full list of:

Independent schools

Independent schools have the flexibility to set their own fees and develop their academic and non-academic programmes. While most independent schools offer GCE O-Level or A-Level examinations, two independent schools also offer the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme.

Some independent schools are also Special Assistance Plan (SAP) schools that are committed to nurturing bilingual and bicultural students who are immersed in the Chinese language and culture, and are equipped with a global outlook.

Key offering Some flexibility in programmes and curriculum, and flexibility to charge different fees.
Fees
  • Singapore Citizens: $300 to $600 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $600 to $1,000 per month.
  • International students: $1,000 to $2,500 per month.
Independent schools set their own fees and structure. Visit the schools’ websites for the latest fee information.
Scholarships and financial assistance  Depending on the school, your child may be eligible for:
See the full list of independent schools.
Specialised independent schools (SIS)

SIS offer specialised education catering to students who have talent and strong interests in Mathematics and Science, the Arts, Sports, and applied learning.

The four specialised independent schools are:

  • NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, for Mathematics, Science, Technology and Engineering.
  • School of Science and Technology, for applied learning in Science, Technology, Aesthetics, Engineering and Mathematics.
  • Singapore Sports School, for Sports and Athletics.
  • School of the Arts, for Visual, Literary and Performing Arts.
Key offering Specialised education for students who have talent and strong interests in applied learning, Mathematics, Science, Sports or the Arts.
Special requirements
Students must apply through the Direct School Admission for secondary schools (DSA-Sec) process for the following schools:
  • NUS High School of Mathematics and Science
  • School of Science and Technology
  • School of the Arts
Students interested in the Singapore Sports School must apply directly to the school.
Fees
  • Singapore Citizens: $300 to $380 per month.
  • Permanent Residents: $450 to $800 per month.
  • International students: $950 to $2,700 per month.
Specialised independent schools set their own fees and structure. Visit the schools’ websites for the latest fee information.
Scholarships and financial assistance  Depending on the school, your child may be eligible for:
See the full list of specialised independent schools.
Specialised schools

NorthLight School and Assumption Pathway School are specialised schools that offer an experiential and hands-on learning approach for students who do not qualify for a secondary course of education after the PSLE. Students graduate with an ITE Skills Certificate (ISC) at the end of Year 4, which prepares them for employment or admission into the Institute of Technical Education (ITE).

Crest Secondary School and Spectra Secondary School are specialised schools for students eligible for the Normal (Technical) course (SSNT). They offer an alternative educational pathway for students who prefer a customised, hands-on and practice-oriented curriculum. Students graduate with a combination of Normal (Technical) level and ISC qualifications at the end of Year 4.

With effect from 2021, the Secondary 3 SSNT cohort will offer the ITE Skills Subject Certificate (ISSC) instead, as part of the regular curriculum review to better cater to the needs of the SSNT students. The ISSC provides a more broad-based curriculum that allows students to better discover their interests and make more informed choices about their post-secondary education and future careers.

Key offering Customised programmes for students who are inclined towards hands-on and practical learning.
Special requirements
For NorthLight School and Assumption Pathway School, students can apply if they:
  • Do not qualify for any secondary school course after 1 to 3 attempts at the PSLE.
  • Applications by students who have attempted the PSLE only once will be considered based on the recommendations of their primary school principals.
For Crest Secondary and Spectra Secondary:
  • Students must be eligible for the Normal (Technical) course.
Fees Varies across schools. Visit the schools’ websites for the latest fee information.
Scholarships and financial assistance  Your child may be eligible for:
See full list of specialised schools.