Admissions Criteria

How and when are admission decisions made?

At Shanghai American School, admissions is selective. Decisions are based on a holistic review of each candidate's demonstrated academic potential, their developmental, social, and behavioral background, as well as their English language proficiency. Parents should note that admissions decisions also consider family alignment with the school’s mission, values and goals

Enrollment offers are not made on a first-come, first-served basis. Amongst equally qualified candidates, priority consideration - not automatic placement - will be given to: 

  • U.S. and other foreign citizens
  • Those with an international background and/or international schooling 
  • Those with stronger academic English proficiency 
  • Those with siblings currently attending SAS 
  • Returning students in good standing 

Admissions decisions also take into account the balance of English language learners and other relevant demographic factors to ensure that a diverse and vibrant cohort is joining our learning community at each grade level.

Decision Process and Outcomes

  1. Applications are reviewed for qualification
  2. Qualified applications are placed into the wait pool
  3. Qualified applications are considered alongside other wait pooled applications at decision rounds for either:
       • An offer of admission
       • A decline of application, or 
       • A continuation of wait pool

Decision Rounds

Shanghai American School receives and reviews applications on a rolling basis. We encourage families to submit all required documents by the published submission dates so applications can be considered in the relevant decision round:

Pre-Kindergarten 3 & 4

                                                         Completed Application* SUBMITTED By Announcement
Decision Round 1 Jan 5, 2024 February
Decision Round 2 Jan 26, 2024 March
AdHoc After Jan 26, 2024 Rolling

Kindergarten - Grade 12

                                                         Completed Application* SUBMITTED By Announcement
Decision Round 1 Nov 22, 2023 January
Decision Round 2 Jan 26, 2024 March
AdHoc After Jan 26, 2024 Rolling

For example, for a Grade 1 application to be considered in Decision Round 1, the application must be completed by November 22, 2023 and an admission decision will be announced in January 2024. 

*An application is considered ‘completed’ when the application fee is paid and the online application form and all required supporting documents have been submitted. You will receive an acknowledgement from your Admission Officer once your application is completed and they will invite you for any necessary assessments and/or interviews at that time. 

Admissions Update

Kindly note, seat availability is now limited across many grade levels on both campuses. We highly recommend you contact our Admissions Team directly before submitting an application for 2024-25. Applications for the 2025-26 school year will open in the fall. 

Once you’ve ensured that your child is eligible to apply, you can begin your application any time.