Please complete the Application Form and email to firstname.lastname@example.org together with your supporting documents and proof of payment of the Application Fee.
School Fee Payment Policy
• A non-refundable non-transferable application fee must be submitted at the time of application.
• The school requires a security deposit, in order to confirm the placement of any children.
• One deposit per child is required.
• The deposit is fully refundable when the student leaves the school, without any interest on demand, if all accounts have been settled in full, all school property returned without damage and required written notice submitted one full term in advance of the child's last day of school (holidays excluded).
•If a student does not enroll in the school while the school have reserved a place for him/her, or if the student’s remaining tuition fees are insufficient to cover the cost of study for one term notice period, the student’s security deposit will not be refunded.
•The tuition fee varies according to grade level as shown in the tuition fee chart.
•Tuition will be calculated on a percentage basis for new students who enroll after the commencement of a term.
•Once a student joins the school full fees are charged until the student leaves the school. If a student is absent for any reason, the fees will not be refunded, except for any additional fees (if permitted by any additional fee notice).
•If a student intends to withdraw from the school, parents shall give written notice to the school one term in advance, indicating the date of the student's last day at school (except holidays). Parents must ensure that the school receives written notice of the student's withdrawal.
These include but are not limited to:
Optional Bus Fees
•Once a term commences, there are no refunds for that term whether a student is leaving school on a temporary absence, or no longer requires the bus service.
•One copy of the student's school report, teacher's reference letter and/or school recommendation form will be given only if all accounts have been settled before the student leaves the school. •Additional charges will be applied for each extra copy of school reports.
School Refund Policy
Fee Refund and Withdrawal Policy Additions
•If written notification of withdrawal is received on or before 31 July, 100% of the tuition fees paid to date will be refunded, less 20% of the annual tuition fee.
•If written notification of withdrawal is received on or before 31 August, 100% of the tuition fees paid to date will be refunded, less 50% of the annual tuition fee.
•If written notification of withdrawal is received on or before 30 September, 100% of the tuition fees paid to date will be refunded, less 70% of the annual tuition fee.
For further clarity, if a student is not officially withdrawn in writing prior to 1 October, there will be no refund of that year's tuition fee paid.
Boarding fee refunds
•If a student no longer requires to board written notice must be given one full term in advance. Should a student leave boarding during Term 1, the cost of Term 2 & Term 3 will be refunded.
•Should a student leave boarding during Term 2, the cost of Term 3 will be refunded.
•Should a student leave boarding during Term 3 no refund will be made.
•The original tax receipt (Fapiao) must be returned to the school when refund is requested. No refund can be made without returning the original tax receipt (Fapiao).
•Refund will be reimbursed to the parent or company in the same way the original payment was made, except: * Where the original payment was made by a company cheque, the refund will be processed directly to the drawer who issued the cheque through bank transfer;
• Where the original payment was made by a personal cheque, the refund will only be processed directly to the drawer's nominated Chinese bank account through bank transfer;
•Where the original payment was made by cash the refund will only be processed directly to the parent or company's nominated Chinese bank account through bank transfer;
• Where the original payment was made by the parent him/herself from overseas, the refund will only be processed directly to the parent's nominated Chinese bank account through bank transfer.
•Refunds are only payable within 10 working days after the student leaves the school.
Tax receipt (Fapiao)
•Once the new academic year starts, the school cannot issue the tax receipt (Fapiao) for previous academic years.
•Tax receipts (Fapiao) will be issued once the school receives the payment.
•Tax receipts (Fapiao) can be collected at the Finance Office or sent by mail if an address is provided.
•Lost tax receipts (Fapiao) cannot be reissued, but a chopped copy could be offered.
Fee Payment Schedule
•Tuition and all other fees must be paid by the due date as stated on the school's invoice. Students will not be allowed to attend classes if fees are not paid by the due date.
Fee Payment Method
•Fees should be paid by our online school portal School Pal system. All payments must include the invoice number and/or the name of the student.
•By Credit Card: Credit Card payments can be made only in person at the MIS Finance Office's. MIS will apply a surcharge to each transaction amounting to 1% for domestic cards and 3% for foreign issued cards.
Fee Payment Notice
•The invoice is issued in RMB only;
•All bank transfer fees are the responsibility of the payer.
•If the fees are paid by an employer this should be by bank transfer. However, it is always the parent or guardian's responsibility to ensure that the fees are paid before the student starts school.
Late Payment of Fees
• It is the parents' responsibility to ensure all fees are paid before any student starts each school term. If fees are not paid on time, the school has the right to refuse attendance of the student at school and/or to withhold student reports.
•The School reserves the right to amend its policies and fee structure whenever considered necessary and appropriate.
Admission to Merchiston International School is determined by a number of factors. Applicants are admitted based on their ability to succeed socially and academically in our dynamic learning environment as well as demonstrating a good work ethic, a history of school-appropriate behaviour, and a desire to attend MIS.
To be successful at MIS, students must be willing to work hard and be committed to our programme. Our teachers provide the support necessary for students to become confident, independent learners. Additionally, we expect parents to be supportive of, and involved in, their child's education. It is the student, however, who is responsible for making the effort to meet the school's academic expectations. MIS expects students and parents to understand and support the school's aim to serve a diverse and inclusive population.
Our students come from a variety of racial, ethnic, cultural and socio-economic backgrounds. The entire school community works tirelessly to maintain an environment that is welcoming for all students. The decision to offer a place to a prospective student is taken by the individual Heads of Section to whom the student has applied. The Head of Section is supported by the Head of School and the Admissions Department. Admission is based on academic evaluations and assessments, English proficiency, past school records, student interviews, teacher recommendations and any diagnostic testing that will help the Head of Section to understand any special learning needs an applicant may have. Year level placement will be determined by the birth date of the applicant.
The maximum number of students in each class is as follows：
Note: The School reserves the right to increase the maximum number of students in each class under special circumstances with approval from the Head of School.
1. Complete and submit the application form, pay the application fee and include all supporting documents.
2. Admissions Department arranges assessments. Overseas candidates can be assessed at their current school.Application Form approved by admitting Head of Section.
3. Parents are informed whether an offer of a place has been approved or denied.
4. Application approved and offer placed: to accept the offer RMB 18000 is required to secure the place.
5. Application approved and applicant put on waiting list: if there are more candidates than available places the applicant will be placed on a waiting list.
6. Application denied: student can reapply after six months.
Students wishing to enrol into MIS must hold a foreign passport or other identity document. All students wishing to enrol into International School are subject to the admissions criteria set out below and students enter the School at their appropriate year level (there may be some flexibility with this, although it is the policy of the School to place students in age appropriate year groups; any exceptions are to be made by the Head of School).
1. All applicants Year 3 or above will sit an online Cognitive Ability Test (CAT4).
2. All applicants Year 3 or above will complete an English Language assessment (e.g. WIDA test). WIDA stands for World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment.
Year 1 and 2 students will only be admitted to the School once the Head of Juniors or her deputy has met with one or both of the applicant's parents. Any previous school reports, observations and assessments should also be made available to the School at this time. Where possible it is strongly recommended that the child spend a morning or day in class in advance of their admission so that the School can gauge the child's level of readiness to access our curriculum. Applicants not able to be assessed in person will be admitted on a provisional basis at the discretion of the Head of Juniors.
Students applying for admission must undertake assessments to ensure they can access the curriculum. Students are required to take the Cognitive Abilities Test (CAT4) consisting of verbal, quantitative, non-verbal and spatial assessments and an English language assessment (e.g. WIDA). The Admissions Department will arrange a time for the student to sit the assessments and communicate this to parents. This assessment may be done at the student’s current school under the supervision of a teacher.
Ideally, the candidate would spend a morning in the classroom with the other students of the correct age group. The class teacher will then assess the candidate using the following guidelines:
1. Can the student access the curriculum?
2. Can the student relate to others in the class?
3. Will the student benefit from the education offered at MIS?
4. Are there implications to the class and school of accepting this student?
5. Will the student need additional support for EAL or to access the curriculum?
6. Will the student need boosting to reach the level of others in the same year group?
7. Will the student affect the learning of others in class?
The class teacher is responsible for giving feedback to the Head of Juniors regarding the suitability of the candidate and whether the school can support their educational needs. If the class teacher feels that the student may need additional learning support, the Student Support specialist will be contacted to also meet with and assess the child.
In some cases, the applicant, along with their parents/guardians after their trial classroom experience will go through an interview process with the Head of Juniors. The objective of the interview is to determine the language and/or learning needs of the student and to ascertain their suitability for that year group.
If a student is identified as in need of EAL support by the parents and/or class teacher on the day of the initial assessment and scores below 90 on the Verbal section of CAT4, and/or below 2 in the WIDA English Language assessment, the Head of Juniors will assess whether the school can, and how it will, support the learner if admitted to the school.
Students entering the Senior School are required to take the Cognitive Abilities Test (CAT4) consisting of verbal, quantitative, non-verbal and spatial assessments. Additionally, all candidates will be asked to complete an English language test as an additional language assessment (e.g. the WIDA test). All applicants will also be interviewed by the Head of Seniors. Candidates applying for a place in Year 12 or 13 will also be interviewed by the Head of Sixth Form who will make a recommendation. During interview all Key Stages 4 or 5 candidates will be asked to select examination Subject Option choices.
If the CAT4 Test indicates a low verbal score (below 90) and low English language level ability (e.g. WIDA scores under 2) the Head of Seniors and the Student Support teachers will discuss whether the school can and how it will, support the student if admitted.
Special arrangements can be made for the assessments to be administered in an applicant's current school.
Placement on a waiting list is determined by the date the application and fee are received, except in cases where priority is given. Priority will be given to:
1. a child of a full-time faculty member
2. a qualified sibling of a current student who has completed the application process
3. a child transferring from another Merchiston Castle school.
If an applicant does not obtain a place during the term for which they have applied, the applicant will be automatically transferred to the relevant waiting list for the following term. At the end of the academic year an applicant's name will be transferred to the appropriate year level for the new academic year. Waiting list positions are not disclosed to parents.
To avoid disappointment, we would always advise early application.
Applicants accepted for admission will receive an invoice following the acceptance letter. Upon notification of acceptance, parents are invited to confirm their intention and pay a security deposit of RMB 18,000. If payment is not made by the date specified on the invoice, the applicant's place will be forfeited and may be given to another applicant. No student will be allowed to attend class until his or her tuition and placement deposit has been paid.
Parents will receive a declined letter by email. Students may reapply after 6 months if appropriate and having completed and evidenced any recommendations.
The following is meant as a guideline to assist the Heads of Section in making the final decision on whether to offer a student a place at MIS or not. It is a guideline and not binding. Heads of Section are free to base their decisions upon other factors such as the desire to readdress ethnicity or gender imbalance, etc.
Any applications for a student to join a year group outside that designated by their age will be assessed on an individual basis by the Head of Section and subject to review and agreement by the Head of School. The primary motivator will be the specific learning and social needs of the individual student.
As a rule of thumb, Heads of Section will review every application individually based on:
1. evidence submitted by parents (e.g. reports or work samples)
2. testing done by MIS
3. personal interviews with the student
For promotion into a year group above the age of the student, evidence should demonstrate academic capability of at least above average in the desired year group alongside social maturity.
For admission to a lower year group, evidence should demonstrate attainment significantly below the average for the year group and / or a level of social maturity well below the average.
Other issues that may be taken into account for moving a child ahead of their age or to a class below the expected age range are:
1. placement in previous school or national education system
2. students coming from schools using a southern hemisphere calendar
3. learning or developmental delays
Any change in year group is subject to regular review and throughout the process parents will be fully consulted. In all such applications, the professional opinion of the Head of Section will be the determining factor.
Special arrangements can be made for candidates to take assessment examinations in their home country. If a candidate cannot be interviewed, the application will still be processed. However, the letter of acceptance will state that, as the child has not been interviewed, the offer of enrolment is provisional and can be withdrawn if the school determines it cannot meet the child's needs upon arrival at MIS.
Admission to the School depends upon a prospective student being able to demonstrate that they can meet the educational and general standards that apply to all its students. The School must also feel reasonably sure that it will be able to educate and develop the prospective student to the best of their potential and in line with the general standards achieved by the student's peers so that there is every chance that the student will have a complete, happy and successful school career and emerge a confident, well-educated and well-rounded adult with a good prospect of a satisfying life.
These criteria must continue to be met throughout the student's time at the School. Students who apply to the school must fulfill the School's academic entrance requirements. This is usually done through entrance assessment (or by public examination results). This allows us to ensure that Merchiston is the right school academically for each student, and to tailor our academic programmes to the needs of our students. Assessment for each point of entry is different, and details of the assessments can be found on the School's website. The School requires parents to complete the appropriate section of the Application Form (available on the website) at the time of application, and to declare any additional support needs, medical condition or disability, which could require specialist support, treatment or equipment. This information is essential to assist with any interview or other pre-assessment screening. All students are screened for additional support needs at the time of initial assessment and undertake a medical examination on entry. The School's policy is to apply the same criteria to all current and potential students regardless of any disability or need of which it is aware, subject to its obligation to make reasonable adjustments so as not to put any disabled student or potential student at a substantial disadvantage compared to any student who is not disadvantaged because of his disability. In addition to assessments, we will normally take up a (confidential) report from a student's current school, which will provide information on their academic progress to date, and their general behaviour at school. Merchiston is committed to providing equal opportunities for students irrespective of race, religion, socioeconomic background or disability, and we strive to maintain and apply admissions policies which do not discriminate against candidates on these grounds. If you have questions regarding this Policy Statement or any other aspects of our Admissions process, please contact the Admissions Department.
JUNIORS (EARLY YEARS- YEAR 6)
Children entering the Juniors undertake baseline assessments to ensure that they can access the curriculum with reasonable ease. Children who cannot access the curriculum can become demotivated and demoralised. As a result they do not make the progress of which they would be capable in a school better suited to their needs. We use standardised Cognitive Abilities Tests (CAT4) consisting of verbal, quantitative, non-verbal and spatial assessments. These tests are taken online.
Required scores for automatic consideration of acceptance.
Quantitative – 100
Non-Verbal – 100
Verbal – 100
Spatial – 100
English as an Additional Language
If a child has English as an additional language and for example,
a Non-Verbal score of 120+
a Quantitative score of 110+
a Verbal score of 90
They will be considered favourably for entry according to the availability of support and the percentage of EAL children already within the Class/Year group. Parents will be advised to secure external support for their child and will be asked to agree to their removal from the Mandarin Programme – during which EAL lessons take place. Where applicable the Head of Section can insist that the admission of the child is dependent upon the student entering the intensive English programme.
Special Educational Needs
If a child applies with certain learning needs, they may be considered for learning support on receipt of an educational psychologist's report. These applicants will be approved on an individual basis.
Children with behavioural difficulties will, similarly, be considered on an individual basis.
SENIORS (YEARS 7-13)
Students applying to the Seniors at MIS must undertake a series of assessments to determine their suitability for the programme offered at the school. These assessments are as follows: Standardised Tests (CAT4): Verbal, Quantitative, Non-verbal and Spatial.
The primary indicator of a student's suitability for a place in the Senior School is the Cognitive Abilities Test (CAT4). Statistically, students who achieve an average of 100 or more for the four tests will score A*, A, B or C for their IGCSEs. In fact students scoring 120 or more will tend to achieve A*, A or B. Generally, as English is the language of instruction at MIS, the Verbal component of the assessments carries the most weight. Moreover, a number of the students who apply to the school have English as a second language. A table guide to the criteria for acceptance can be seen below:
|Non Verbal scores 100 and above||Accepted|
|Non Verbal scores below 80||Rejected|
Please note that the CATs have a margin of error of three points either way.
|Non Verbal scores 100 and above||Accepted|
|Verbal 90 - 99 (other scores 100+)||
Provisional acceptance. EAL support will be provided.
|Verbal 90 - 99 (other scores < 100)||
Individual cases considered by the Head of Section.
Admission will depend upon the student agreeing to enter an accepted intensive language programme and an appropriate package of other subjects being available.