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Consider These Factors When Choosing a Secondary School

Teaching the skills that matter most in our brave new world, parenting tips

The idea of choosing a secondary school can be intimidating if your child is not already accepted under Direct School Admission. After all, your child will be spending four to five years in their secondary school. There are many factors aside from cut-off points to consider, and it can feel challenging. We hope this article can help with this important decision when your child goes through the Secondary 1 posting process.

1. Strengths and interests

Take the time to sit down with your child and figure out their strengths and what they are interested in. If your child is passionate about sports, consider a school that has an integrated sports programme like the Singapore Sports School. Consider School of The Arts (SOTA) if your child is artistically inclined. Do keep in mind that independent and independent specialised schools have higher fees as compared to government or autonomous schools. It is also important to take into account your child’s learning pace as well when considering the course to apply for – Express, Normal (Academic) or Normal (Technical).

2. Distance and travel time

Your child’s school day in secondary school will tend to be longer than that in primary school. Therefore, it is important to consider the distance they need to travel daily. There will be school days that require your child to stay late as well, like CCA days or supplementary classes. Do keep in mind that your child will also need to do homework and revision as well, so distance and travel time is definitely an important factor to keep in mind.

3. Affiliated schools

If your child attended a primary school that is affiliated with a secondary school, they may be given priority admission if they meet the secondary school’s requirements and indicate that secondary school as their first choice. Certain secondary schools are affiliated with Junior Colleges (JC), so if your child intends to attend a JC, this is another factor to consider when choosing a secondary school.

4. Secondary school open houses

Open houses are a great way to check out the environment and culture of the school. There are both physical and virtual open houses available. The open house is the perfect chance to get all the answers your child may have about the school. Check out the individual school’s website to find out when the open house will be held.

As schools can hold their open houses at any time of the year before or after the release of PSLE results, it will be good to keep a lookout when your child progresses to Primary 6. Following the social media accounts of your child’s preferred schools can be one way to get the latest updates.

5. Talk to relatives and family friends

Encourage your child to talk to relatives and family friends about the process they went through when choosing a secondary school, and what factors went into the decision they made. If a relative attended the same school your child is aiming for, they can take this opportunity to find out more about the school environment and culture, as well as clarify any doubts they may have.

We hope this article can help provide some insight when making this significant decision regarding the next step in your child’s academic journey.

Choosing their secondary school might be an overwhelming process for your child after they have received their PSLE results, so don't forget to let them enjoy their holidays as well. Why not refer to our previous article on fun post-PSLE activities to give your child a well-deserved break?


Looking for an enrichment programme to give your teen an edge for their English papers in secondary school? Find out more about how our Critical Reading & Writing (CRW) programme can help your teen achieve that. You can also hear from one of our teachers and catch a glimpse of our CRW classroom.



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