CHANGES TO THE PSLE SCORING AND SECONDARY ONE POSTING FROM 2021
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Secondary One (S1) Posting

From 2021 onwards, choice order will be used as a tie-breaker when two or more students with the same score vie for the last available place in a secondary school. Choice order of schools will therefore matter more under the new system, and we encourage parents and students to consider a variety of factors (e.g. ethos, programmes, child’s interests) when choosing schools.

How S1 Posting Works

Students indicate up to six different choices, in order of preference


Students are posted to secondary schools based on merit (i.e. PSLE Score based on T-Score Aggregate or Achievement Level)
  • A student with a better score will be posted first
  • Each student will be posted to a secondary school based on his/her choice order of schools, starting from the first choice
  • If there are no more vacancies in the school, the student will be considered for his/her next choice school


When more than one student with the same score vie for the last available place in a secondary school, tie-breakers will be used to determine who gets the place

Current System

  • Citizenship is the first consideration – priority is given to Singapore Citizens, followed by Permanent Residents, and then International Students
  • If students have the same citizenship status, the outcome will be determined by a computerised ballot

New System

  • Citizenship is still the first consideration – priority is given to Singapore Citizens, followed by Permanent Residents, and then International Students
  • [NEW] If students have the same citizenship status, choice order will be used as a tie-breaker, i.e. the student who ranked the school more highly will be considered first
  • If the choice order for the school is identical, the outcome will be determined by a computerised ballot

Choice Order of Schools to Matter More

  • Choice order of schools will matter more under the new S1 Posting system, because it will be used as a tie-breaker when two or more students with the same score and citizenship status are considered for the last place in a school.

  • This recognises the different considerations that families have when choosing secondary schools, for example the school’s ethos, culture, programmes and CCAs, as well as distance between the school and home.

Example:
Don and Gerald, both Singaporeans with the same PSLE Score, are vying for the last place in School A. Gerald did not manage to get into School B, as his PSLE Score is lower than the school’s COP.

To decide who gets the last place, citizenship is first considered with priority given to Singapore Citizens, followed by Permanent Residents and International Students. As Don and Gerald are both Singapore Citizens, choice order of schools is used as the next tie-breaker.

How should you choose a secondary school?

  • We encourage parents to discuss with their children when choosing secondary schools. When selecting schools, students and parents should consider the child’s fit with the school.

  • Cut-off points (COPs) provide an indication of schools’ academic profiles, for students to assess academic fit, but this should not be the only consideration when choosing schools

    • MOE will provide indicative COPs of secondary schools for the first year under the new system to help parents and students make informed choices

    • However, the actual COPs may differ, depending on the performance of the cohort, and how students and parents actually exercise their choices that year.

  • Beyond COPs, other areas that students and parents could consider include:

    • Suitability of the school’s learning environment to the child’s learning need and interests

    • Programmes and CCAs that will develop the child’s unique strengths and interests

    • School culture and ethos

    • Distance between school and home

  • For more information on secondary schools, parents and students may refer to:

    • SchoolFinder

    • Respective school websites in the Secondary 1 booklet given to students in Primary 6

    • Secondary schools also hold open houses where students and parents can learn more about the school’s programmes, and speak with teachers and students.

Use of HCL for Admission into SAP School

  • When applying to SAP schools, HCL students will continue to receive an advantage.

  • Although HCL results do not count towards the PSLE Score, if students with the same PSLE Score are applying for limited places in the same SAP school, those with better HCL grades will be allocated a place ahead of other students. This applies before the tie-breakers for Secondary 1 posting.

  • Let’s look at an example. There are 6 students competing for the last 2 places in a SAP school. They have been arranged in descending order of posting priority. The student who has a PSLE Score of 7 will gain admission to the SAP school. Then, out of the students with a PSLE Score of 8, the student with a distinction for HCL will be admitted into the SAP school next, ahead of the other students who also scored 8 but had poorer or no HCL score. The advantage that HCL students will obtain under the new system is similar to that under the current system.

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