Friday, November 27, 2015

P1 Registration, Her Journey to Rosyth! Step by step guide on P1 Registration

Many parents complain about the primary school registration in Singapore being a stressful process, but I beg to differ, probably I'm someone who plans ahead, and I don't give myself unnecessary stress for engaging in "mission impossible".

Here, I would like to walk you through the school selection and registration, I hope it will be helpful to you.

Step 1: Check the schools distance
Regardless of which stage of parenthood you are, be it "Kiasu" parent whose kid is not even born, or "super slack" parent who panick last minute, ask yourself this question:
"What are the schools around my house?"
Check the link here:

P.s. you might want to check it before purchasing a property (yah, Kiasuism again, but it saves you from crying later).
Warning: Please do not buy a house next to elite school if you are not interested in joining the game, some parents didn't realise how popular the school next to their property, and this is the group of parents who will cry "I just want a school near to my place!!".

Basically, I do not encourage parents to register in a school further than 1 km from your place, unless you have a chauffeur (or you want to be one lol).

Step 2: Check the registration / balloting history
You can check the history here:
But you need to be a member to view the content.
The balloting history will give you an insight on how popular the schools around your place, which is helpful in your decision making.

Step 3: Decide on the available options
It depends on which stage are you in, do you have sufficient time to grasp the school of your choice?
Here, let me do up a decision tree for you:
A) School does not require balloting
Ok, you may continue to slack, but don't forget to check the MOM website during the registration period to avoid unexpected outcome.

B) School requires balloting
 - Is your kid below 4 years old?
 You still have the option to volunteer yourself for your kid to be qualified in 2B phase. If you're very firmed on the school of your choice, you may apply to be a Parent Volunteer (most school open the registration for PV 2 years before P1 registration); if you're undecided, Grassroots will be a better choice (GV's entitlement to 2B phase is for the schools in your constituency, thus you can still decide on which school to enrol your kid upon registration of P1) .

For my case, all three schools in my neighbourhood require balloting, i.e. Hougang Primary, Xinmin Primary, and Rosyth Primary. Rosyth is one of the top school in Singapore, while both Hougang and Xinmin are very popular neighbourhood school in our area,  I could not decide which school shall I enrol her, and serving the residents seem to be in-line with my passion, thus I've chosen to be a GV rather than PV. Do note that new requirement starting 2015 requires GV to serve for 2 years before 2B phase certificate can be issued.

I've seen too many parents who are "bo chap" when their kids were in nursery, but changed their mind after seeing the classmates of their kids enroll into popular school. These are the parents caught unprepared, yet do not want to "lose out".

 - Is your kid above 4 years old?
 If you still want to try your luck and missed the boat of volunteering your service, you can only rely on the strategies which I will reveal to you next........ pay attention!

Step 4: P1 registration strategies, be prepared!
If you belong to the A group, just make sure you check the MOM registration phase before its closing date.

If you belong to the B group, do plan ahead and be decisive:
1) Enrol on the last day of registration, not the first day
2) Check the registration status on the last day of registration, 2 hours before closing time
3) Make your decision decisively, shall I join the ballot? Shall I pull out (from first choice) to another school?

Here I give you a few real life cases:

1) Last year, 2 grassroots volunteers of my constituency registered in Rosyth, on the last day of registration, 1 grassroots volunteer found out that balloting is required even for citizen staying within 1 km of the school, he decided to withdraw his kid and put him in Hougang, which only required balloting in 2C phase. This volunteer secured a slot for his kid in Hougang in 2B. The other grassroot volunteer, decided to try her (or her kid's) luck, which the kid didn't get a place in Rosyth from the balloting, she disappointedly register her kid in Hougang again in 2C phase, which a balloting is required. She and her kid went through 2 rounds of heart trembling balloting.

2) A friend of mine, initially deciding between 2 schools, School A and School B. School A was very popular neighbourhood school but required balloting in phase 2C for non citizen while School B did not require balloting. She was hesitating to make a decision between the 2 choices. School A and School B are both good school in her area, but she decided to try her luck at School A. There were around 18 PR turned up for the balloting for 2 vacancies, she was not one of the lucky two. Her child then need to go through phase 2C Supplementary to get a place in P1. For this phase, as most Singaporean who fail to get a place in phase 2C would then register for their next best option, which would be school like School B, Singaporean will have advantage over the non citizen, which means my friend will need to ballot again if she were to register her kid at School B. She then decided to register her kid at School C instead. Using this example, if she were decisive at phase 2C, her kid would be able to register in School B without balloting.

I hope the above write up is useful to you, no matter which school is your kid attending, remember the MOE slogan, every school is a good school! :)

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