Integrated Programme in Secondary School


I felt bad putting Brendan through extra pressure. However, if we don’t try, I would blame myself for giving the opportunity a miss. Haiz…

So for past few months, mother and son were extra busy identifying secondary schools to enrol in, going for OPEN HOUSES and registering Brendan for Direct School Admission (DSA). Then as a result, there were the General Abilities Tests (GAT) and interview that he has to attend for secondary school’s DSA shortlisting, in addition to preparation for his preliminary/PSLE examinations.

[Our boy was tested on his higher ability analytical thinking and articulation skills while being recorded during face-to-face interview. Imagine myself going through a grilling interview at 11 years old. I would have cold sweats but we are proud of our boy for passing it with smiles:)]


I felt like a step mother breathing down his neck. It was really madness for past few months with my adrenaline soaring high. It seemed like I was the one enrolling for schools and attending the interviews! Our comfort is that our boy actually volunteered to attempt for DSA without us psychoing him. He discussed the schools with us too after learning more about them. Seriously,  I feel blessed to have a self-motivated boy.


We are over the moon….

Then, I was 10 times more elated than being told my own achievements when we received the good news!  Brendan was given a confirmed place in an ideal secondary school with 6-year Integrated Programme (IP) leading to the ‘A’ Level examinations before he has officially sat for the PSLE:)

Our boy made it, being one out of the only forty over successful applicants!  As long as he meets the criteria of express stream in his PSLE.


If our boy pursues the Integrated Programme (IP and also known as through-train programme), he will bypass the GCE ‘O’ Level examinations and eventually sits only for GCE ‘A’ Level examinations at the end of his 6-year education in the programme. The IP targets to expose the students to a broad-based education and enrichment activities besides those core subjects.

It has always been our hope to expose our boy to a broader education and enable him to develop in other areas besides just studying academic subjects for a certificate. Eg. social responsibility in life, leadership and entrepreneurship.


Then we started to think twice….

I have this concern : “What if students in IP do not make it in ‘A’ Levels and in the end, do not even have a GCE ‘O’ Level certificate to fall back on?”

Well, this is a true worry but I guess it is a risk that all students in IP has to take, including our boy. Do I really want to worry that far as in 6 years later?


If you are interested to know more about Integrated Programme, you may read here and here.

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One Response to “Integrated Programme in Secondary School”

  • Linette says:

    Congratulations! It is not an easy feat getting into an IP school from DSA! He is a really smart boy, not just in IQ but also EQ. Well done, Brendan (and Mummy!)

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