FAQs on Admissions

1. What happens if an applicant’s priority status changes?

An applicant’s priority status may change, for example, through making a Nomination Rights application or as a result of a sibling gaining entry to an ESF school. In such cases, the applicant will be placed onto the waiting list in their newly acquired priority group according to the date the priority change occurred.

2. When should I submit applications to ESF schools for my children?

Parents may submit ‘one’ online application for admission for the current academic year or for the following academic year for ESF primary or secondary, Discovery College or Renaissance College. There are waiting lists at each of our schools and the offer of a place is dependent on vacancy being available.

Central Applications for 2019-20 Year 1 (born in 2014) for ESF primary schools, Discovery College and Renaissance College and Year 7 (born in  2008 for ESF secondary schools) will be open from 1 to 30 September 2018. For parents who wish to apply, please click Year 1 or Year 7 for the latest application information available from mid-June 2018.

Those who are applying for years other than Year 1 and Year 7 need to apply through general applications.

Applicants to ESF International Kindergartens should refer to our website for further information on admissions procedures.

3. What are the selection criteria of ESF schools for applicants?

ESF schools are not selective: admission is through interview/assessment and depends above all on the student’s ability to benefit from an ESF education. Moreover, school places are offered according to zone (geographic location of the students’ address) for ESF primary and secondary schools. Discovery College and Renaissance College remains zone free.  Please click here to see further details on ESF’s Admissions Policy.

For ESF’s two all-through Private Independent Schools (PIS), Discovery College (DC) and Renaissance College (RCHK), the admissions policy has to be in line with the Hong Kong Government’s requirements for all Private Independent Schools (PIS):

  • RCHK and DC have no catchment area. Any student residing in Hong Kong can apply to attend.
  • When the Colleges are at full capacity, at least 70% of the total students enrolled must have at least one parent who has Hong Kong permanent resident status.

Please click on the links to for the two Private Independent Schools (PIS): Renaissance College and Discovery College.

4. How should I apply for school places other than Year 1 or Year 7?

For General Applications, parents may submit an online general application for admission for the current academic year or the following academic year for an ESF primary or secondary school or Discovery College or Renaissance College. There are waiting lists at each of our schools and the offer of a place is dependent on vacancy being available.

5. Is it true that there is now a very long waiting list for ESF schools?

Yes, the waiting lists for ESF schools are long on the Kowloon side schools. They are relatively shorter and hence more opportunities on Hong Kong Island side schools. As of August 2019, there were about 3,000+ applicants on waiting lists (excludes Y1 and Y7 central applicants) across all ESF Primary and Secondary Schools applying for general admissions. For further information on individual schools or specific year groups please contact our School Admissions staff.

6. What is the process for reapplication for the next academic year?

Applicants on the current waitlist will be sent a system email in February or March inviting them to reapply. (No reapplication fee is required.) If no reapplication is received, the application will be considered withdrawn.

7. The new one form application asks for 3 preference of schools. The options are ESF school of zone, Discovery College and Renaissance College. Do I need to fill in ALL 3 preference of schools?

You may choose one school or up to three schools. Parents must be prepared to attend any of the school selected. Once the application is submitted, the preference may not be altered. Interview/assessment will only be for one school.

For General Applications, the applicant is place on the wait list of your 1st preference school. For Year 1 and Year 7 Central Applications, the applicant will wait list for the 1st preference school if they is no availability for interview/assessment.

8. Can an applicant be considered at an alternative out of zone ESF school if there are no places for the zoned school?

If there is availability, we will look at this option to direct applicants who have indicated they are willing to go out of zone. Parent are responsible for transportation to school as there is no PTA bus serving out of zone areas.

Click here to see the frequently asked questions on the Online Admissions System (OAS).


Last updated: 3 Sep 2018