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Nurturing school in Singapore- Dover Court the only option?

(36 Posts)
caramelgirl Thu 29-Jan-15 20:01:32

Following on from my thread about moving with a shy 5yo DD . I was wondering about a school which might suit. She is quiet and slow to emerge from her shell but likely to be academic I would guess. Currently thriving at a UK Montessori.
Looking at previous threads it looks like Dover Court would be my best bet. Do you think this is right? And where would be usual to live? Nearby? Do play dates tend to happen after school or at weekends?
Thanks!

butterfliesinmytummy Fri 30-Jan-15 00:23:41

We were at dove court for 5 years and loved its nurturing side. We lived near bukit timah / 6th avenue, although holland village is popular too, west coast, even jurong, depends on where your dh will be working too. Girls had friends in river valley which isn't too far but the bus took a strange route so it took a long time. I would call the school if you are interested in bus routes (it's normal for 95% of school kids to take the bus). Play dates were mostly at weekends, evenings were spent at the condo pool with condo friends.

Laptopwieldingharpy Fri 30-Jan-15 01:44:52

We also had a great experience with tangling trust lower primary. It's just that Dover caters better to SN if required.

ShanghaiDiva Fri 30-Jan-15 02:41:58

My daughter's year one teacher is now at the one world school in singapore. She is a great teacher who provided a supportive and nurturing environment for the year one students, so it may be worth taking a look at her current school.

caramelgirl Fri 30-Jan-15 07:27:04

Brilliant. Thanks all. Appreciate school and life tips! I have to admit that the weather here in London is tipping me towards Singapore!

caramelgirl Fri 30-Jan-15 07:28:32

Oh and my DH thinks his employer (a big UK bank) would usually assist with finding a school place? True or are we still at the mercy of waiting lists?

peppapigonaloop Sat 31-Jan-15 06:49:01

I knew a few people whose companies paid the debentures..it can run in to the hundreds of thousands though(!) so you would want to get clarification of that! I have friends who like Dover for the early years but less impressed as they move up the school..
had a lot at UWC all of whom were very pleased with it..it is big though. I think Dover has that smaller school feel. St Josephs international also supposed to be lovely and nurturing as v small, hard to get into though..

Onedegreenorth Sat 31-Jan-15 07:58:20

DS was at SJI (we left Singapore after nearly 8 years last year). He loved it and it was good for him - they are now on calendar year so your September baby would actually be one of the younger ones in the year (DS is an August baby so this was good for him). They were fantastic at building his confidence and he has settled reasonably well in his new International school here.

Re banks and school places it will depend on how senior he is and how much they want him. Dh and I both worked for big banks (I'm not working now) but the packages vary widely and expat packages on the whole are not what they once were.

I would echo what posters on your other thread have said Singapore is very transient so I don't think any of the International schools are bad and they are so used to welcoming new students that I'm sure your dd won't have any problems.

caramelgirl Sat 31-Jan-15 08:29:09

Thank you again! Pretty senior I think (MD) but not a wildly extravagant bank. Will make sure we check!

butterfliesinmytummy Sat 31-Jan-15 15:57:08

I know people who had debentures paid at critical stages of education to get kids into the right schools, but this was in the day of the all singing all dancing expat packages which have largely been scaled back. There weren't debentures available at DC when we were there anyway, and virtually no waiting lists at that stage. I think that with a slow down of western and Australian expats coming into Singapore (cut backs on visas and PR quotas, increasing cost of living, economic slowdown in the west) and more schools opening up (UWC East Coast, Dulwich, Marlborough etc) means that the age of the over-long waitlist is on its way out....

The other schools mentioned are all good and I have friends who have had kids at all of them.

caramelgirl Sat 31-Jan-15 19:58:20

Excellent. That is a relief about debentures.
From being initially reluctant, because of her education and social aspects, I think we are now veering towards a move. Which is quite exciting.
Will no doubt be back with many more rookie questions.
Thank you so much.

LondonZoo Thu 12-Feb-15 00:31:10

The other school that is small and nurturing and which may suit is actually the Swiss School. The Swiss system is heavily influenced by Montessori methods. In the UK equivalent of yR it would mostly be in English anyway. Just one to add to your list.

caramelgirl Thu 12-Feb-15 12:07:53

Ooh, thank you, that is helpful.
I will add it to my list (which is mostly made up of school recommendations- from mumsnet, budget expectations- from mumsnet and areas to live in- from mumsnet. Relocation sponsored by mumsnet!

Christinayang1 Mon 16-Feb-15 19:13:24

Remember that Dover court has recently been taken over, it's still a small school but I am not sure what the longer term plans are. Dover doesn't really have much of a high school so it depends how long you are planning to stay

tanglin still has wait lists

caramelgirl Mon 02-Mar-15 12:08:41

Thank you, we are thinking of two or three years but worth thinking about.
Am trying to arrange school visits over our Easter trip (just arriving before they break up).
Also, any thoughts on the Hollandse school? DH's English boss (admittedly childless) said that he thought it was the best international school in Singapore.

butterfliesinmytummy Mon 02-Mar-15 12:32:25

I've not heard anything exceptional about the Dutch school, seems to be fine, but I have only ever met Dutch kids who go there. Why does your Dh's boss think it's so great?

Saltedcaramellavacake Mon 02-Mar-15 13:58:56

The Dutch school uses the Dutch curriculum and is conducted in Dutch - it's expected that your family is Dutch and speaks Dutch at home or your child has had significant exposure to Dutch (this is part of the admissions policy). I think your DH's boss must be mixing it up with somewhere else. Not sure where though... Maybe the German European School (it has an English language stream, at least...), but generally UWC is regarded as the "best" in Singapore (for an international school).

caramelgirl Mon 02-Mar-15 15:03:55

That's sort of what I thought based on the website. It was deemed a "truly international school" by Boss but will rule it out based on us speaking no Dutch and you guys not rating it.

Nitig Fri 27-Mar-15 18:31:17

Caramel another school i would recommend looking at is Chatsworth International (East branch). My DDs went there when we lived in Singapore. It is a small school ( equivalent to a london prep) which was academic and nurturing. I moved to london with my then 10.5 year ( important later) and 7 year olds. Not only did my girls adjust well in the prep school here, my older DD sat 11+ exams within 7 months of our move and she got offers at top private schools ( with scholarship at one) and 3 grammar schools. So, i think Chatsworth had prepared them well academically. All the best! I am sure you will love Singapore. We sure miss it loads.

caramelgirl Mon 30-Mar-15 14:14:41

Ooh just seen this. Chatsworth House, noted. Am out in Singapore now on a visit so will see if they can slot me in. Kids not so impressed by trawling around in the heat but at least it is turbo acclimatisation, right?!
Thank you for the advice, appreciated.

caramelgirl Wed 01-Apr-15 14:22:53

Have just completed my round of tours and I think liked Dover Court least, surprisingly. Tanglin by far my favourite. Dulwich a contender but not so keen on ongoing building works and school only just starting to "gel".
Both these have y1 places but Tanglin, of course, doesn't.
appreciate it doesn't meet my requirement of small, but it did seem quite nurturing and focused on the individual. I really liked it.
Off to scratch my head a bit more.
Oh, and local friend persuaded me against Chatsworth house. Said she felt it had rep of sliding in last couole of years, was seen as a bit of a holding house for more prestigious schools and didn't differentiate between pupils of varying abilities. Any thoughts? Thanks for all your information and help btw, I have really valued reading lots of past threads as well as this one.

bkksin Wed 26-Aug-15 07:58:52

Hi caramelgirl. I am on the same boat looking for a nurturing school for my shy 5 year old daughter. smile

Which school did you end up choosing? Did you see any others besides the three you mentioned? We will be visiting in a few weeks to look at schools so I'm trying to come up with my shortlist. Thank you! Hope you had a great start at the new school.

ApricotExpat Sun 30-Aug-15 05:30:12

Hi bkksin,

I would suggest you look at GEMS World Academy. Lovely feel to it.

SoonToBeNewSingaporeMum Sat 05-Sep-15 14:00:20

Hi bkksin, we moved to Singapore last month and started going to Dover. They had a major refurb over the summer and lots of changes with the new leadership and ownership and I have to say it is pretty great now. It might not have the facilities other schools have (which tbh are more important for secondary school kids) but my super shy girls (6 and 4) have settled in nicely and the school manages to retain that 'small school' atmosphere that other schools like UWC lack in my opinion mainly due to it's size.

FreddoFrog Sun 06-Sep-15 08:48:25

Another vote for Dover Ct here. My two just started in nursery and year one and I'm so happy with the school. They've both had a great start, have very lovely teachers and are settling in so well. Such a relief.

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