Admissions Process


In keeping with our philosophy as a multicultural school serving international and local communities, we are proud to welcome students of all nationalities, religious and ethnic backgrounds. We operate a non-selective admissions policy and we seek to admit children with a range of abilities into our learning community, helping them reach their full potential and achieve success in their lives.

We seek always to promote equal opportunity, applying our regulations on admissions fairly and without prejudice. All admission applications are carefully reviewed and updated in consultation with stakeholders both within and external to the school, including the directors of Heathfield International School, Vientiane.

Class Organisation & Placement

At Heathfield International School, the maximum class size is 24 pupils, although the average class size may be well under this. It is possible that for a period, these class sizes may be exceeded as new children join a group during a school term.

In managing the composition of classes within a year group, our policy is to achieve as close a balance as possible, considering the following factors: language experience, nationality, ability and gender. If it is felt it will be beneficial to the year group as a whole, existing class groups may be re-organised at the start of the academic year to ensure an appropriate balance. The children are given many opportunities to work and socialize with all of their peers across the year group, and this is especially encouraged.

Although parents may express a preference for a particular class or teacher, it must be understood that the final decision has to remain with the headmaster. In all issues of child placement, the headmaster’s decision is final.

Admissions Procedures

A visit to the school is an obvious starting point to the entry procedure, but we have listed those things which you may require to see, receive, or have explained to you when you visit. Our admissions procedures are described in four stages as set out below, though some stages may, in practice, be concurrent.

Stage 1—Initial Visit

It is helpful if your children are able to accompany you on your initial visit to Heathfield International School, but we recognise that this is not always possible. However, it is certainly the case that the more information we have, the easier it is for us to prepare for your children’s first day at school.

You will be shown around the school and this tour should include:

  • a general tour of the school
  • a particular look at the areas of the school most relevant to your children
  • specialist facilities including music, science, art, physical education, the library and the information technology suites

During your visit, we will explain to you:

  • the formal admissions procedure
  • the details of our educational philosophy and objectives
  • all payments due, stating refund and notice requirements
  • whether or not there is a waiting list at your child’s level (we generally place children in the correct chronological year group according to the British system).

We will answer your queries on these or other matters and we will provide you with a school brochure and a copy of our Admissions Procedures. You will then be introduced to a member of senior management. It may also be helpful for you to meet other teachers, though this may not always be possible on your initial visit. Senior management will be able to guide you through the process and advise you on class placement. However, it must be clearly understood that such advice does not constitute part of the formal offer. Only the Headmaster can confirm such details after receipt of the formal application and following initial observations and assessments.

Stage 2 – Admission interview, trial, and testing.

A member of senior management will talk with your child. Here, we can begin to gauge their level of English and ability to communicate. Naturally, many children are shy and it is the next step that is most important.

Your child will be required to attend a free trial/test period at the school. Ideally, this lasts five days and enables us to better understand your child’s present abilities and needs. We can only accept children whom we believe we can adequately cater for.

This will be arranged with senior management. The classroom teacher will observe and interact with your child. We are particularly interested in their ability to communicate in English, how willing they are to socialize and the respect they show to their teacher and classmates. The teacher’s observations and recommendations are passed on to senior management. They will meet with you and discuss the trial period. We will advise as to whether we can accept your child. It might be that we can accept your child with some provisos e.g. develop their English communication before returning later to ensure they are at the expected level.

Special Education Needs 

Heathfield International School has a Special Educational Needs (SEN) Policy based on the provision available. It is important to note that we do not have a specialist unit at HISV to deal with complex learning and behavioural difficulties. In this case, a child can only be enrolled if we determine that the teacher and class will not be unduly affected by any extra attention and guidance.

The acceptance of students with learning needs will only be confirmed by the headmaster after discussion with parents and the appropriate professional educational support services. It is important that parents share all of the information regarding their child’s learning needs, including any professional assessments, upon application. Failure to do so might risk the loss of the place once the child has joined Heathfield International School if we discover that we are not equipped to best assist and support the child’s development.

English Entry Requirements

The English level required is dependent on the age of the child and the year group to which entry is sought. Senior management will consult with you about the required English levels. We do offer an English support program. Such support may incur an additional fee.

Further Assessment

Should you feel that the school has not adequately assessed and determined your child’s level of ability, we are willing to conduct a formal, external online assessment in English and Mathematics. This costs $30 – $35

Stage 3 – Application

Should you decide to apply formally for admission to Heathfield International School, on behalf of your children, we will require:

  • A completed Application Form
  • A copy of your children’s birth certificates and/or Child’s house registration (Lao families only)
  • 2 copies of a recent passport-size photograph of each applicant
  • A photocopy of the passport (particulars page) of the father, mother and children
  • Employment and/or company license document (for Laotian)
  • A copy of parent’s visas or work permit and company license document (for non-Lao)

At this stage, we will answer any more detailed questions you may have on such matters as school uniforms, transport, school routines, extra-curricular activities and lunch arrangements. If you wish to discuss the particulars of your application further with the headmaster, we will be pleased to make an appointment for you. We will acknowledge your application as soon as we receive it, and if there is a waiting list, will then contact you when a place becomes available.

Stage 4 – Admission to the school

Based on the results of the admission tests and an interview with Senior management, a formal offer of a place may be made immediately should a place be available or alternatively when a place becomes available if there is a waiting list at your child’s year level.

You will receive information covering general school routines, transport, uniform and lunch arrangements.