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Living Near a Potential School for Your Child. Is This a Sure Win?


Many parents in Singapore are hoping to enrol their children into a prestigious or “branded” primary school. So much so that many are buying properties within the 2 km vicinity of these schools.


But is it a sure thing for the child to be enrolled there?


In today’s article, we will look at several factors affecting registration for primary one.


Phases of registration



According to the Ministry of Education (MOE), there are 6 phases of Primary 1 registration:


Phase 1 – For children who have an older sibling currently studying in the school. All children registering under this phase are guaranteed places in the school.


Phase 2 A(1) – For parents who are former students of the school, and have joined as a member of the alumni association not later than 30 June 2020 or for parents who are members of the Advisory or Management Committee of the school.


Phase 2A(2) – For parents or another of your children who have previously studied in the school or parents who are currently a staff member of the school, or if your child is currently in the MOE Kindergarten under the purview of and located within the school.


Phase 2B – For parent volunteers at the school, joined not later than 1 July 2020, and with at least 40 hours of service by 30 June 2021, or parents who are members of an endorsed church or clan directly connected to the school, or parents who are endorsed as an active community leader.


Phase 2C – For children who have yet to register in a primary school.


Phase 2C Supplementary – For children who have yet to register in a primary school after Phase 2C.


In all the above phases, except phase 1, balloting will take place if there are more registrants than vacancies.


Priority admission to a P1 place in a school will be given to children in this order:

  1. Singapore Citizens (SC) living within 1km of the school.

  2. SC living between 1km and 2km from the school.

  3. SC living outside 2km of the school.

  4. Permanent Residents (PR) living within 1km of the school.

  5. PR living between 1km and 2km of the school.

  6. PR living outside 2km of the school.


To determine the home-to-school distance, the address used for calculation will be the address used for registration.



The address should be your official residential address reflected in the identity card (NRIC). This criterion is used for the convenience and interest of the child.


30-month stay requirement


A child who secures a school place through the home-school distance category priority must reside in the address used in the registration for at least 30 months from the start of the P1 Registration Exercise on 30 June 2021.


The family is expected to reside at the address for the duration of the child's primary school studies.



If the 30-month stay condition is not met, MOE reserves the right to transfer the child to another school with vacancies, as the priority admission to the first school was based on the declared address used for registration.


You are allowed to use the address of a yet-to-be-completed property you have purchased.


After you registered for enrolment into the school, you must email one of the below documents to the school:

  • For HDB flat: A printout of the "New Flat" page from MyHDBPage.

  • For private property: A copy of the original Sales and Purchase agreement. The vacant or delivery possession date of the new property you are moving into must be within 2 years of your child’s entry into P1.

  • Letter of Undertaking (LOU)


You must also sign an LOU to undertake that you will move into your new property within 2 years of your child’s entry into P1.


The school will send you the LOU via email, and you will have to sign and email a scanned copy to the school by the stated date. You will need to produce the original signed LOU to the school if you have successfully secured a place at your preferred school. The school will provide you with more details on the submission of the original signed LOU.


Parents with no ties to the school or clan (phases 2B and 2C) are those likely to purchase a property or currently living near their preferred school, as enrolment priorities are based on the distance from their home.



But this is not a sure win as there is the balloting factor if there are more registrants than vacancies.


According to the MOE website, for the current 2022 primary 1 registration exercise, some “in-demand” schools such as Catholic High School (Primary), CHIJ St Nicholas Girls’ School (Primary), Nanyang Primary School, Pei Hwa Presbyterian Primary School and Rosyth Primary School are already facing balloting in Phase 2A(1).

What to expect?


The 2022 Primary 1 students are those born in 2015, which had the highest number of citizen births at 33,725.


This was the highest number of births in 13 years.


So the chances of your child’s enrolment are also dependant on the number of children eligible for registration.


As admission is not guaranteed (except for phase 1), many parents are becoming members of an endorsed church or clan directly connected to the school, or volunteering at the school and making donations, to improve their chances, instead of just relying on the home-to-school distance criteria.


It is also interesting to note that “branded” schools such as ACS Primary and Junior, Singapore Chinese Girls’ School and Methodist Girls’ School are all located in the core central region (CCR), namely Newton and Bukit Timah, where it is mainly upmarket private condominiums and landed properties.


Prices of property in CCR is also the highest amongst all the regions in Singapore.


As there are no guarantees, it remains to see if you end up with a sure win or a rather expensive piece of real estate.



Have A Question? Feel Free To Comment Below.


Are you looking for a new home? Head to Mogul.sg to browse your preference of properties for sale or rent in Singapore.



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