What are SAP Schools?

03 May 2023

SAP is an abbreviation for Special Assistance Plan, which is a programme catered to students who are strong in their mother tongue. Schools that offer SAP are known as SAP schools.

But they are better known as Chinese Schools. This is because all SAP schools are Chinese only schools (they don’t offer Malay or Tamil). That means SAP is created for students who are good in both English and Chinese.

What’s great about SAP?

The Singapore government provides more funding to promote the learning of (Chinese) mother tongue and (Chinese) culture. With more funding, SAP schools can purchase more resources and provide activities such as caligraphy classes.

In short, SAP schools have more resources. Unsurprisingly, they are the top, elite schools in Singapore.

Some subjects are taught in Mandarin, thus further developing their bilingual ability. There is also opportunity to participate in exchange programs with China.

What are the SAP Primary Schools?

There are 15 SAP Primary Schools.

School Area Gender Affiliations
CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls’ School Ang Mo Kio Girls only CHIJ St. Nicholas Girls’ School
Red Swastika School Bedok Mixed  
Ai Tong School Bishan Mixed  
Catholic High School Bishan Boys only Catholic High School
Nanyang Primary School Bukit Timah Mixed Nanyang Girls’ High School
Pei Hwa Presbyterian Primary School Bukit Timah Mixed  
Nan Hua Primary School Clementi Mixed  
Kong Hwa School Geylang Mixed  
Maha Bodhi School Geylang Mixed Manjusri Secondary School
Holy Innocents’ Primary School Hougang Mixed Holy Innocent’s High School
Hong Wen School Kallang Mixed  
Tao Nan School Marine Parade Mixed  
Poi Ching School Tampines Mixed  
Maris Stella High School Toa Payoh Boys only Maris Stella High School
Pei Chun Public School Toa Payoh Mixed  

What are the SAP Secondary Schools?

There are 11 SAP Secondary Schools:

School Area Gender
Anglican High Tanah Merah Mixed
Catholic High Bishan Boys only
CHIJ Saint Nicholas Girls’ Ang Mo Kio Girls only
Chung Cheng High Marine Parade Mixed
Dunman High Tanjong Rhu Mixed
Hwa Chong Institution Bukit Timah Boys only
Maris Stella High Toa Payoh Boys only
Nan Chiau High Sengkang Mixed
Nan Hua High Clementi Mixed
Nanyang Girls’ High Bukit Timah Girls only
River Valley High Boon Lay Mixed

What about Malay and Tamil?

There are other (smaller) programmes for Malay and Tamil, but as their population is smaller, there is no Malay or Tamil equivalents.

Furthermore, students in Chinese schools are all ethnically Chinese, thus they lack interactions with other races.

Such concerns are frequently raised, and there was a response from Minister of Education in 2021.