APPLICATION PROCEDURES & POLICY

The International School of Nanshan Shenzhen accepts applications from new students throughout the year. ISNS admits students on the basis of “rolling admissions”, taking completed applications in the order in which they arrive until no space remains in a given class. Please note that applications after April 1 will ordinarily be considered as applicants for the next school year in August, not for the current school year. 


As an international school, ISNS accepts applications from all nationalities outside of mainland China, in accordance with Chinese law, for K3 to Grade 12.


The Admissions process is composed of four steps:  application, student assessment, interview and acceptance. Prior to being considered for admission to ISNS, students must file a complete application package and submit all documentation as required.


Step 1: Schedule a School Tour

TOURING THE SCHOOL


Step 2: Gather the Necessary Documents & Information

Completing the online application form is only possible when you have prepared electronic copies of the following documents. The specific format for each is specified below, and must be uploaded as attachments when applying. 


If you are unsure of which the year level you should select for your child when you apply, consult our age/year level equivalents, which show how the ISNS grade levels correspond to differing ages and national curricula.


  • Copy of Student's Birth Certificate

  • Copy of Student's Foreign Passport or Copy of Student's Foreign or Hong Kong/Macau/Taiwan passports with Chinese Visa and the immigration record 

  • Copy of Parents/Guardians` Passports

  • 1 recent, passport-sized, color photo

  • Up-to-date Health and Vaccination Records

  • Copy of Student's Medical and Accident Insurance Policy

  • School Transcripts/ Report Cards for the last 3 years (in English) for Students applying to G1 to G12


Step 3: Complete the Online Application Form

All applications to ISNS must be submitted through our online application form. We do not accept paper applications. Please check that you have prepared all of the necessary documents from Step 1 before beginning the process.


Admissions files cannot be processed, nor students placed on waiting lists, until all of the required materials have been provided to the Admissions Office.


Step 4: Pay the Application Fee

There is a non-refundable application fee of RMB 2,500.  Payment can be made by bank transfer, debit card, or cash  at the time of assessment and/or screening.  For families outside of Shenzhen, payment can be made through Bank Transfer.   


Step 5: Application Review by Admissions Team

Our admissions committee will review the application in accordance with the school’s admissions criteria. The length of this process varies depending on the time of year at which you apply, and factors taken into account about each applicant include:


  • Age

  • Class size/space availability

  • English language proficiency

  • Previous school records and recommendation(s)

  • Siblings currently at ISNS and alumni siblings

  • Alumni Parents and Students 

  • IB programme experience

  • Nationality/ethnicity

  • Admissions test/academic ability

  • Extra-curricular/community involvement


After making a candidate’s records and application, the admissions committee may then grant approval for an admissions screening and/or assessment. The school reserves the right to not accept an application if the student is unlikely to be accepted to ISNS. In other cases children may be invited for an interview and assessment in order to help to determine their educational abilities and possible needs such as English as an Additional Language (EAL) assistance or other specialized support.


Step 6: Admissions Assessment or Screening

After completing the above steps, candidates may be invited to sit for an admissions screening and/or assessment.  Assessments may be done in person or online. All candidates must pay the application fee of 2,500 RMB, which is non-refundable, regardless of entry to the school.


After reviewing the assessment results and school records, the academic team will make a final decision as to whether or not the child may be enrolled at ISNS. Please note that the admissions assessment material is private and is considered to be the property of the school; parents will not be entitled to the original or a copy. 


Step 7: Enrolment

Families will be notified as soon as possible of the admissions decisions. After this notification and the submission of all documents requested by the school, the actual enrolment will take place. Once a place has been offered, the family has a limited period, specified by the school, in which to accept it. At the time of acceptance to the school, certain fees are payable. This will be explained in further detail by the admissions staff.


Admission to the school does not guarantee student enrollment beyond the initial year, which will be dependent on the maintenance of satisfactory levels of progress and behaviour, as well as space availability. Class placement is determined by ISNS in order to guarantee a balance of several factors, and individual requests unfortunately cannot be accommodated.


POLICY

ADMISSIONS POLICY

The International School of Nanshan Shenzhen accepts applications from new students throughout the year. ISNS admits students on the basis of “rolling admissions”, taking completed applications in the order in which they arrive until no space remains in a given class. Please note that applications after April 1 will ordinarily be considered as applicants for the next school year in August, not for the current school year. 


As an international school, ISNS accepts applications from all nationalities outside of mainland China, in accordance with Chinese law, for K3 to Grade 12.


The Admissions process is composed of four steps:  application, student assessment, interview and acceptance. Prior to being considered for admission to ISNS, students must file a complete application package and submit all documentation as required.


The ISNS Admissions procedure is transparent and fully explained to the parents of prospective students.


Acceptance Criteria

Academic Skills

ISNS is a university preparatory school that challenges students to meet the highest standards and expects each student to learn to their maximum potential. Applicants must show their motivation to succeed in the high academic standards of ISNS.  All applicants (as applicable) must provide an academic record from the school that they were previously enrolled in.   Students who have a significant gap in their education history and transcript may not be accepted.


Life Skills

ISNS is a learning community bound together by the principles of respect, responsibility and honesty. As such, ISNS accepts only students whose past record demonstrates a clear commitment to these principles.  Throughout their time at ISNS, students are expected to develop their communication skills, social skills, research skills, self-management skills and thinking skills - in the IB program, these are known as the Approaches to Learning (ATLs).   Students who enroll at ISNS must have the desire to become a better person, in addition to progressing academically.  The ten attributes of the IB Learner Profile define what ISNS students should aim to achieve in their personal growth.  In short, ISNS is seeking students who will be the leaders of tomorrow.  


Exceptional Learners

ISNS believes all students should have the opportunity to learn in an environment which meets their unique exceptionalities.  Unfortunately, ISNS is not equipped to support learners with significant learning or physical difficulties.  ISNS will therefore not accept students whose needs cannot be appropriately met by the current ISNS academic staff.  


Applicants with learning difficulties or physical challenges will be assessed based on their ability to interact with fellow students and teachers, and to learn without the assistance of special needs teachers.  These applicants will be screened on an individual basis. 


At the time of application, parents must provide all materials related to the unique needs of their child. This includes any test results, cognitive examinations or medical reports relating to the child’s needs that could have an impact on their ability to learn. Documents supplied should also include previous teacher and counselor comments regarding the ability and potential of the student.  Additionally, if the child currently receives special or additional academic or behavioral support, information should be provided about the level of support the student requires. Students with exceptional needs will be admitted only after a review of all materials.


ISNS reserves the right to request that appropriate psycho-educational testing be completed before admission or during the academic year for any student. These tests must be done at the expense of the family and could influence that child’s admission to or enrollment in ISNS.   ISNS recognizes the value of cooperation between home and school. With this in mind, if ISNS deems outside assessments are required to better support the student’s academic and social-emotional growth and progress, parents will be well informed in advance. If consent is not provided for any requested external assessments, ISNS might not be able to continue to support the student.


High School (Grade 9-12) and Diploma Programme Applicants

For applicants to Grades 9-12, students must show that they are prepared to undertake a rigorous curriculum and succeed at ISNS.  Applicants must also be at grade level in terms of English ability.  Students entering the Diploma Programme (Grades 11 and 12) will be required to take an Orientation Course in order to understand the programme and be successful at ISNS.  Applicants will have the option of being mainstream or full-DP students.  Applicants to the full Diploma Programme must understand the intensity and fast-pace of the curriculum so they are fully prepared for the challenge of this difficult, yet rewarding, programme.


For applicants to Grade 12, ISNS will only accept students who are transferring from another IB DP school which offers the same courses as ISNS.  Applicants will be considered individually based on their previous academic abilities and skillsets to successfully graduate from ISNS.


English Language Assessment

ISNS uses the English Language Assessment to determine the English level of incoming students. Applicants to Grades 2 – 10 must obtain a minimum score based on the grade to which they are applying.  This assessment is very important to make sure that students can meet curriculum expectations and succeed at ISNS.   ISNS offers an EAL Program in Grades 1-5 for students who require some English language support.

** These standards are subject to other benchmarking based on criterion set by the Board of Education of New Brunswick, Canada


Mathematics Assessment

At ISNS, our students engage in a rigorous Math curriculum. As part of the ISNS Admissions procedures, the School reserves the right to administer a mathematics assessment to students prior to or following acceptance to the School. The grade level math assessments are administered in order to show computation and problem solving proficiency. 


Mandarin Assessment

At ISNS, our students have the opportunity to study Mandarin language. As part of the ISNS Admissions procedures, the school reserves the right to administer a Mandarin language assessment to students prior to or following acceptance to the School in order to place them in the correct level of Mandarin language study.


The Admissions Interview

Interviews are scheduled after the English and Mathematics Assessment, between the family and the Head of the School, Principal and/or the relevant IB Coordinator, depending on the grade level. Interviews usually take place in person.

Each student’s interests and questions are important to us. Each applicant is encouraged to prepare a list of questions to ensure that we address the issues most important to them.


Reports and Records

All applicants should submit a complete set of report cards or academic records from each institution they have attended in the past.


Confidential References

All applicants are encouraged to submit confidential reference letters from previous teachers, coaches or mentors.  


Waiting Lists

The maximum class size at ISNS for K3-K5 is 18 students, Grade 1 is 20 students, and Grade 2 and above is 24 students.

In the case of a child being accepted to ISNS but with no space available in the class, the child is placed on a waiting list.

Accepted students are placed on a waiting list strictly in chronological order by date of completed application. Priority is given to:

  • ISNS Alumni: returning students

  • Siblings: siblings of students already enrolled in the school

  • ISNS employees: children of ISNS staff and faculty

This policy will be reviewed annually by the Senior Academic Leadership, the Executive Director and in collaboration with · Senior Operations Leadership team members. 


Revised: March 17, 2021.