Policy and Procedures (Kindergarten)

Admission Criteria

Selecting a Kindergarten

Allocation of Places at the Kindergarten

To enable your child to enjoy the full benefit of their pre-primary education, you are advised to keep him or her enrolled in kindergarten for the full two years of the programme. Within ESF, the PYP curriculum extends from kindergarten into primary and students planning to continue their education in ESF will have the advantage of continuity in their learning as they transition from kindergarten, preparing them socially and educationally for life in Year 1 in an ESF primary school. A certificate of completion will be issued to students who graduate from an ESF kindergarten at the end of K2.

Children admitted to the kindergarten should be able to engage with an English medium, inquiry-based curriculum. We encourage parental support for children in the educational programmes offered by the kindergarten.

Priority is given to:

  • Children of full-time staff or staff at ESF or ESL who have been employed by the Foundation for over a year.
  • Siblings of students already attending an ESF school or ESF Private Independent School, siblings of students already attending an ESF International Kindergarten, or siblings of former ESF International Kindergarten students who attended for at least a year.
  • Children of former students who have attended an ESF school or ESF Private Independent School, for a minimum of three years or are former ESF students returning from a period overseas.
  • Other applicants who can benefit from an English-medium education.

You may only apply to one ESF International Kindergarten. There is no geographical zoning of the kindergartens, however, the following guidelines can be followed in identifying a suitable kindergarten.

  • Families living on Hong Kong island should apply to Hillside kindergarten.
  • Families living in the Clearwater Bay, Tseung Kwan O, Hang Hau and Sai Kung area should apply to Abacus kindergarten.
  • Families living in Ma On Shan, Tai Po and Shatin should apply to to Wu Kai Sha kindergarten.
  • Families living in Sai Kung may apply to Abacus or Wu Kai Sha kindergartens.
  • Families living in Kowloon should apply to Tsing Yi kindergarten.
  • Families living in Lantau, including Discovery Bay, should apply to Tung Chung kindergarten
  • Families living elsewhere in the New Territories may apply to Tsing Yi, Tung Chung or Wu Kai Sha kindergarten.

Note: The kindergartens may offer a visit at another kindergarten to which the application was made to manage the overall volume of applications.

All K1 applications received during September will be processed and sorted by computer generated random number and priority.

Applications will be allocated either a morning or an afternoon session. Care will be taken to ensure that twins and siblings of attending children are allocated the same session. The kindergartens will take account of the needs of the overall kindergarten community when making offers.

The process for making offers for K1 will start in December. Working through the list, parents and children are invited for a visit where the staff will meet and observe the children and talk with the parents. Parents can hear about the curriculum, view the premises and decide whether they wish to proceed with the application. Children may be invited back for a second visit. The purpose of the visit is to determine whether the kindergarten is an appropriate setting for the child.

Offers of places will be made after the visits and will continue to be made until all places are filled. Some parents and children may not be invited for a kindergarten visit in the event that places have been filled.

If a place becomes available at a later date, parents and children on the waiting list may be invited to visit the kindergarten.

Successful applicants will be issued with a contract after the visit. The session, either morning or afternoon, will be advised in the contract. To take up the place, parents are required to sign the contract, purchase a debenture and pay the first month’s fee in advance.

Unallocated applications will remain in their designated place on the waiting list.

K1 applications received outside of the September application period, after the deadline of 30 September, will be allocated a place on the waiting list in accordance with their priority and by date of application.