Choosing the Best Preschool for Your Child in Singapore

Preschool is a big milestone in a child’s and parent’s life.  Early childhood experts say that attending a high-quality preschool program helps to promote children’s social and emotional development.  Studies have also shown that children who attended high-quality early education programs are more likely to have better test scores and grades, go to University, and have better-paying jobs. So how do we choose the one that is best for our child?

In Singapore, some of the main types of preschool settings are:

  1. Kindergartens (usually 3-4 hours in the morning OR afternoon);
  2. Full-Day Childcare (child-minding only)
  3. Full-Day Childcare (with a preschool curriculum)
  4. Half-Day Childcare
  5. Flexi-Hours Childcare

Childcare centres usually operate between 7am – 7pm on weekdays and 7am – 1pm on Saturdays.  Some childcare centres will also provide options for half-day childcare or flexi-hours childcare (3hrs a day).  MCYS offers subsidies off registered childcare facilities for full-time working mothers who are Singaporeans. 

In choosing a preschool, here are some things to look out for:

  1. The centre’s curriculum fosters a love for learning and its program is appropriate for your child’s personality and needs.  It has a sound and balanced teaching philosophy.
  2. The values that the school aims to inculcate in your child are what you would like your child to learn.
  3. The enrichment programs in the school holistically develop your child academically, physically and artistically.
  4. The food the centre serves is good for your child’s growth and nutritional needs, especially for childcare since your child will have many meals there.
  5. The principal, teachers and staff are qualified, passionate and motivated.
  6. The teacher to student ratio is low to enable sufficient attention for your child and communication with you.
  7. The children in the school look happy and engaged.
  8. The overall quality of the centre’s environment and its facilities (e.g. outdoor play/gardening/music rooms) is good.
  9. Good quality learning toys and tools are provided.
  10. Naptimes and showers are well-organised.
  11. The centre’s location is appropriate for you.
  12. The costs (including costs of enrichment courses) are within your affordability.