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What chance of getting into an ESF school?

  1. #1
    desertboots is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2009

    Unhappy What chance of getting into an ESF school?

    Hi Everyone

    Our family has been asked to move to Hong Kong, next summer, by my husband's work. We are British but have been living in Dubai for a looooonnng time. We have one son who will be 7 when we move so looking at year 3. I've been looking at the ESF website and contacting the schools - some have replied, some haven't. I'm very confused about the whole zone thing as we don't have this in Dubai, there also appears to be long waiting lists. I'm appealing to all recent newbies in HK - did you have problems getting your child into a school? What's the alternative? Home schooling? And how does it REALLY work with this whole zoning thing? Heeeelllllppp please. We are visiting HK in two weeks time to check it out - which schools should we go and visit? Any recommendations?

  2. #2
    carang's Avatar
    carang is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Sai Kung

    personally, i believe that the ESF schools are all pretty similar. so, it wouldn't really matter which one he goes to.

    try CLEARWATER BAY (if you don't want to live in the centre of town). BRADBURY, if you want to live in mid-levels (centre of town).

    there are also proper "international" schools to consider. these do not have zones at all and accept students from all over the territory.

  3. #3
    Jo Bowd is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Beacon Hill, Kowloon.
    Quote Originally Posted by desertboots View Post
    Our family has been asked to move to Hong Kong, next summer, by my husband's work.
    Check the ESF website about their "Corporate Surety Scheme".

    Corporate Surety scheme enables companies to secure school places for expatriate employees before their arrival in Hong Kong over the summer months. Their scheme runs from 1 January to 30 June of each year. There are limited Surety places. Visit their website in December 2009 for information and application for 2010.

    Maybe you can get your husband to negotiate this as part of his package?

    I don't know much about other international schools, but I think they also have corporate schemes, that enable you to jump the line, if your husbands company are willing to shell out the cash.

  4. #4
    yonge is offline Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Hong Kong

    Homeschooling is technically illegal in Hong Kong, but the government generally doesn't bother foreigners who do it - although they have made examples of locals who. Your son is older, so available places will certainly be fewer at any international school, including ESF. You might find out at which schools your husband's company may already have corporate debentures. Visiting schools will not really help you get a place - but a corporate debenture will!

    I seriously thought of home-schooling, but manage to secure a place for my 4 year-old to go to Singapore International School - where the medium of instruction is English and Mandarin (simplified characters - same as what is used in China) only. The debenture and school fees are relatively less expensive, and the curriculum prepares the child for the international baccalaureate. With some extra work at the beginning, your son should be able to pick up the Chinese. Good luck and welcome to Hong Kong!

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