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Getting into German Swiss International School



The German Swiss International School (GSIS) is a prestigious international school in Hong Kong that has been providing world-class education to students for over 50 years. With a strong emphasis on bilingual education, GSIS offers a rigorous academic curriculum that prepares students for success both in Hong Kong and abroad. GSIS has a student body of over 1,200 students, from kindergarten to grade 12, with a diverse range of nationalities represented. The school has a strong track record of sending its graduates to some of the world's top universities, including Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and Stanford.


Curriculum:


GSIS has the International and German language stream which offers different curriculums – the International stream offers classes in English and focuses on the International Baccalaureate (IBDP) and the General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE).


GSIS has a strong German stream, which offers a bilingual education in German and English. The German stream is open to students of all nationalities and is designed to provide them with a solid grounding in both languages and cultures. The curriculum for the German stream follows the guidelines of the German Ministry of Education and includes subjects such as German language and literature, history, geography, and politics.


GSIS also offers a range of co-curricular activities, including sports, music, and drama, to help students develop their talents and interests outside of the classroom.


Applying to German Swiss International School


As a school boasting some of the highest IBDP (2022 Average 41) scores in Hong Kong (and the world), it’s a very popular school that attracts a lot of applications, and it’s extremely difficult to get into GSIS.


At the Kindergarten level, the school only accepts around 40 students (2 classes of 20 students) at the KG1 level (3 years old), and do not accept students at KG2 (unless a child is leaving, which is very rare). As GSIS can take applications at birth, we estimate there are at least 600-800 families applying for KG1 spaces every given year. The school looks for students with age-appropriate English skills, and assessments are conducted in group settings.


Priority is given to German/Swiss/Austrian passport holders and siblings, but considering the scarcity of spaces, we think even those with prior relationships to GSIS find it difficult to get in.


GSIS adds an additional 12 spaces at Year 1 (5 years old), which isn’t a lot. Spaces during primary will be hard to come by, and any openings are subject to existing GSIS students leaving the school. At the start of secondary, Year 7 (11 years old), GSIS adds another class of students which approximates to around 27 spots. As this is a formal intake year, this is the best year to apply for GSIS. Testing at this stage is rigorous, and comprises of 3 rounds of assessments, including the 1) CAT4 2) English and Mathematics written assessments, and 3) English Interview. The CAT4 is a computer-based test that comprises of spatial, verbal and non-verbal reasoning. Students are required to score well in all aspects of the assessments in order to be considered for entry.


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