Admissions policy

The information on this page has been extracted from the KIST Admissions Handbook. Please read the complete handbook for more detailed information on admissions policies. 


Applications for admission to KIST will be considered for all children regardless of race, national or ethnic origin, religion, gender or socio-economic background. As KIST does not employ a learning needs specialist, we are unable to accept applications for students with special needs. Applications from children with physical disabilities will be considered on a case-by-case basis according to the specific needs and whether or not the school environment can cater for such needs.

As part of our commitment to maintaining a truly international student body, applications are accepted from students of all nationalities. Approximately 650 students representing around 45 nationalities currently attend KIST including approximately 20% American/Australasian/British/Canadian, 8% African/European/Middle Eastern/South American, 18% Indian/Pakistani/Bangladeshi, 29% Japanese and 25% other Asian. A very high percentage of students have dual nationality.

In order to promote diversity, we strive to maintain a balance of nationalities at each grade level (from Grade 1 and above) as well as in individual classes. We also strive to maintain a balance of English language abilities between students at each level. We seek to ensure that the balance of nationalities and language groups is diverse while at the same time does not compromise the position of English as the language of instruction. Gender balance is also a consideration in all classes. Various other factors are also taken into consideration when reviewing applications for admission. 

Age eligibility

The cut-off date for enrolment age at KIST is July 31. By this date, all applicants must be the required age as indicated in the chart below to apply. Please check the chart to determine the grade for which your child is eligible to apply. 

Grade Eligibility Chart (2019 - 2020)
  Area of school Grade   Age   Date of birth
To apply for

Elementary School

K1 your child must be 3 as of July 31. Aug. 1, 2015 - Jul. 31, 2016
K2 4 Aug. 1, 2014 - Jul. 31, 2015
K3 5 Aug. 1, 2013 - Jul. 31, 2014
Grade 1 6 Aug. 1, 2012 - Jul. 31, 2013
Grade 2 7 Aug. 1, 2011 - Jul. 31, 2012
Grade 3 8 Aug. 1, 2010 - Jul. 31, 2011
Grade 4 9 Aug. 1, 2009 - Jul. 31, 2010
Grade 5 10 Aug. 1, 2008 - Jul. 31, 2009
To apply for

Secondary School

Grade 6 your child must be 11 as of July 31. Aug. 1, 2007 - Jul. 31, 2008
Grade 7 12 Aug. 1, 2006 - Jul. 31, 2007
Grade 8 13 Aug. 1, 2005 - Jul. 31, 2006
Grade 9 14 Aug. 1, 2004 - Jul. 31, 2005
Grade 10 15 Aug. 1, 2003 - Jul. 31, 2004
Grade 11 16 Aug. 1, 2002 - Jul. 31, 2003
Grade 12 17 Aug. 1, 2001 - Jul. 31, 2002


We believe that children socialize best with other children of their own age. Therefore, we prefer to keep students within their correct age group according to their date of birth as indicated above. For K1, applications for children younger than the eligible age will not be considered for any reason. For K2 and K3, applications outside the cut-off dates will only be considered in exceptional circumstances where specific reasons exist. In such cases, placement decisions will be based on observations, previous educational experiences and teacher recommendations. Observations or assessments additional to the regular enrollment process may also be required. All K1 to K3 applicants must also have completed toilet training before joining the school.

In certain cases for Grade 1 to Grade 10, we may consider requests for enrollment for up to a maximum of one grade level above or below an applicant's eligible grade depending on previous school records, years of schooling, and the level of academic performance. In such cases, the specific reason for the request must be stated in your application and documentary evidence must be attached where appropriate.

In the Secondary School, applications for Grade 11 and 12 may be considered from children up to a maximum of one year below or a maximum of two years above the eligible age. Due to the nature of the two-year course of study in the Diploma Programme, applications for Grade 11 are not accepted after September 30, and applications for Grade 12 are only accepted from students who are transferring from an IB school where the subject options match those at KIST.

Although the decision for an application outside the eligible grade will be made after careful consideration of the specific reasons through discussions with parents, it may not be possible to grant the request if we believe that it would be detrimental to the child's learning development or inappropriate for our teachers or the needs of other students in the class.

Language requirements

The student population at KIST represents a wide range of different countries and cultures. This means that our students also speak a variety of different languages. To enable all students to learn together through one language medium, we have adopted English as our language of instruction. With the exception of very young children, students must have reached a certain level in English already in order to enter the school. Applicants for the Secondary School, in particular, must be able to demonstrate a high level of English ability in order to cope with the demands of studying specialized subjects in English. Because of this, due to the nature of the course of study, applicants seeking admission to Grades 10 and above who are identified as requiring language support will not be accepted.

Application screening

In order to maintain a diverse student population and to reflect the school's goal of providing an affordable education to all, certain criteria are considered for enrollment. It is essential that the school's programs and environment match the expectations and needs of both parents and students who apply to KIST. As we receive many applications each year for limited places, it is not possible for every child to be admitted. In order to determine the suitability of applicants for our school and identify those who are most likely to benefit from the programs we offer, all applications are screened by our Admissions Panel.

Not all applications will pass the initial screening stage. Those that are unsuccessful will be unable to proceed to the interview and test stage. If your application does not pass the screening stage, you are welcome to submit another application for the next school year; however, before submitting another application, we suggest you consider the admissions criteria carefully. Please note that we are unable to respond to individual inquiries regarding the result of an application. Submission of an application indicates your understanding and agreement with this policy.