Direct School Admission

Published Date: 02 August 2021 06:00 PM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Darryl David, Ang Mo Kio GRC


To ask the Minister for Education whether he can provide an update as to how the Direct School Admission (DSA) for admission into secondary schools is progressing under the present COVID-19 restrictions.


1. There continues to be healthy interest in the Direct School Admission for secondary schools (DSA-Sec) this year. There were about 31,400 applications received from 12,100 unique applicants, which was a slight increase from last year. In 2020, 30,500 applications were received from 11,900 unique applicants.

2. The 2021 DSA selection is being held between end-June to mid-September. Similar to the 2020 DSA exercise, all shortlisted applicants will have their interviews and selection trials conducted via video-conferencing in their own primary schools, using a standardised set-up and equipment. This ensures the safety and well-being of students and school staff by preventing the intermingling of students across schools.

3. Secondary schools will continue to take a holistic approach to DSA selection, considering not only the student's achievements and performance at the e-interviews and e-selection trials, but also their interest and passion for the talent area, their potential, and personal qualities. During the e-selection, students will be asked to perform suitable tasks that demonstrate their attributes and potential in their talent area. The format and task will vary depending on the talent area and the secondary school's selection criteria. With insights gained from their experiences in implementing the 2020 DSA exercise, the DSA schools' selection panels made up of staff experienced in talent identification will collectively evaluate each DSA applicant to ensure objectivity and select students who can most benefit from their development programmes.

4. Offers will be made by schools after assessing the relative merits of all applicants and taking into account the applicant's passion, potential, personal qualities and suitability for admission to the school.

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