Inclusive & SEN Schools in Singapore

Which specialist and mainstream international schools offer the very best SEN, differentiated or inclusive education for children aged three to 18 years?
Inclusive & SEN Schools in Singapore
By Carli Allan
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The Winstedt School (TWS)


Curriculum: International Primary Curriculum (IPC); International Middle Years Curriculum (IMYC); Edexcel International Primary and Lower Secondary curricula; Pearson Edexcel, and International General Certificate of Secondary Education (IGCSE)
Enrolment: Four to 18 years
Number of students: 170
Fees: $39,000 (Reception) - $54,891 (Years 10-13)
Facilities: Occupational therapy, behaviour therapy; and speech and language therapy clinics; two specialist gyms; and The Cloud room for quiet reflection. The school has several specialist learning classrooms including arts studios; STEAM lab; science and computing labs; auditorium that seats 350; library; and music studio. Outside, there is a sensory garden, basketball court and all-weather court
Admission criteria: Admissions interview, submission of 2 years of school reports and any other additional documents such as Educational Psychology Assessment and therapy reports
Teacher-student ratios: 1:7

The Winstedt School is “educating children who learn differently”. As one of only a few schools in Singapore to offer an inclusive education, Winstedt has a highly regarded reputation for specialising in differentiated learning for diverse learners. Some students may or may not have learning differences, and some are Twice Exceptional students who benefit from a tailored and imaginative learning environment to thrive in an academic setting. 

In common with mainstream schools, students here follow various international curricula. However, it's the delivery of this curricula that sets this school apart from many mainstream schools.  Lessons are delivered using "multi-sensory and differentiated teaching approaches to allow students with diverse learning profiles to make meaningful connections".

The school has a very nurturing learning environment with a focus on emotional wellbeing, low teacher to student ratio (1:7), and a support team for each student. Also, Winstedt’s in-house therapists work in tandem with the teachers so that students are not just receiving therapy in isolation outside of the classroom.

As one Year 10 says: 

"Kentaro has absorbed a lot of things during his time at Winstedt, expanding his horizons around the world. The teachers at Winstedt changed his life. He was able to recognise his position, create a sense of responsibility, try new things, and be patient and become more resilient – and be able to withstand criticism from others. This was reflected in the learning which fostered independence in learning."

Winstedt offers two innovative programmes. The SEED (Readiness) Programme is for students who are not yet ready to access the mainstream curriculum and need some extra support and resources. SEED provides a 2:8 teacher to student ratio with a dedicated special education needs teacher and a behavioural therapist in the classroom.

The Curie-Einstein Programme supports students who are “twice-exceptional,” also referred to as “2e,”; these students have the characteristics of gifted students with the potential for high achievement and give evidence of one or more learning disorder/s.


CEO Ann Yom Steel says:

"Unlike traditional international schools, The Winstedt School does not automatically assume all children of a given age are working at the same academic level. Instead, Winstedt looks at each student as an individual and places him or her into a year level based on a variety of factors including social and emotional development, learning profile, and academic skills.
"Students in Year 3 and above are further grouped separately by learning profile for the core subjects of Literacy, Phonology (Spelling) and Maths. Students in the Senior School are grouped separately for all academic subjects."

Read the full review of The Winstedt School here.

Next: Dynamics International School

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