Frequently Asked Questions


Most public and private schools require international applicants to pay a deposit or the first-year tuition fee before they issue out a formal letter of acceptance. This letter of acceptance is vital for the study permit application later on so we advise parents to adhere to the payment policy as requested by the school. In the event that the study permit application is rejected, the fee will be refunded to the student.

As applications open one year before the school’s intake, we recommend that parents start preparing the enrolment process 1-1.5 years in advanced due to high demand and limited spaces especially in the more reputable primary and secondary schools.

There are many factors that come into play when deciding which school type to enrol your child into; mostly based on your child’s age, individual preference, needs and abilities.

Typically, it is easier for a younger child (Grade 8 and below) to adapt better to the public school system, the new environment and language especially if English is not their native tongue. Enrolling into a public school at a later age may present more hurdles for a child to go through in adapting to the new system. That said, attending a public school allows your child to assimilate into the local culture and meet more locals as well. Notably, the cost of attending a public school is also much more affordable.

Private schools do have more curricula options for your child apart from the national curriculum of Canada, but the fees are astronomically more expensive.

If you are unsure of which school best suits your child and yourself, do consult our Study Trust agent to assist you in creating a tailored pathway that suits your child’s unique needs.

Students who enter a Canandian public or private school are not usually required to submit an English language proficiency proof. The school will perform an English language assessment with the student, and then arrange for different levels of ESL (English as Second Language) classes for them for a period of 4-8 months depending on the individual’s English language proficiency.

International students will be able to attend the ESL classes along with their regular lessons so that their academic schedule is not hindered and they are able to graduate at the same time as domestic students.

However, some private schools do require international applicants to submit a proof of English language proficiency such as the TOEFL or IELTS for non-native English-speaking students who wish to enter the secondary levels of education. In a case like this, it would be helpful if the applicant already has an English proficiency result with a satisfactory grade though it depends on individual school policy and requirements.

That said, different schools have different approach to accepting international students which is why we advise you to check with the particular school or speak to us and we will be happy to assist you.

Most public schools do not require international students to take an entrance exam. Private schools, on the other hand, do require students to submit a school entrance examination result during the application process such as the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT). Applicants who do not have a SSAT result can attempt the school’s assessment if available. 

Yes, most private schools will conduct interviews with applicants during the admission process. A point of assessment during the interview would be the child’s ability to communicate and acclimatise into the school. Public schools seldom request for interviews though there are exceptional cases whereby an admission officer would do so. In the event that the student is unable to attend a face-to-face interview with the admission officer, most schools will allow for a Skype interview instead.  

A Canadian law sets the age limit of an individual to determine if they are considered a child or an adult, known as the age of majority. The general age of majority is either 18 years old or 19 years old depending on some provinces. A person who is under the age of majority is considered a “minor”. 

International students in Canada under the age of 17 should be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. Parents can also appoint a legal guardian for the child during their study period in Canada if they are unable to physically accompany the child to Canada during their course of study. This is to ensure that international students are well supported and taken care of during their time in Canada.

A custodian simply means an adult who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident who is responsible for taking care and providing support for the child in Canada. Parents or guardians of minors who are unable to accompany the child must appoint a custodian who will be responsible for supporting the child during his/her time in Canada.  

To appoint a custodian, a Custodianship Declaration form should be signed by the custodian and parent or legal guardian of the child and certified by the designated lawyer. The form should then be attached to the study permit application and is subjected to approval by relevant authorities.

Public School
Advantages Disadvantages
Affordable schools for international students (free for Canadian citizens and PR) Do not provide hostel to international students
Rich local curriculum and extracurricular activities, focuses on a holistic development of both academics and wellness Lesser rounds of intake per year, generally only 2-3 because of the large volume of students
Government-funded – quality facilities and resources readily available
Private School
Advantages Disadvantages
Controlled class size and smaller student-teacher ratio Higher school fees
More rounds of intakes per year, about 4-6, to cater to the many international students with different academic schedule Generally, emphasize more on academics rather than a holistic balance

International students age 17 and below are considered minors in Canada and will have to be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian during their course of study in the country. Besides that, parents can also appoint a custodian to take care of and support the child during their stay. Students who plan to study in Canada for more than 6 months will require a study permit. During the study permit application, parents will need to show proof that a legal guardian or custodian is appointed to support the child during their course of study in Canada.

Canada does not have an official parent visa for those who wish to accompany their child. However, the Canadian Immigration department provides alternatives for parents to acquire a visa to stay with their child. Parents will need to clarify their intention at the border services and state their reason for being in the country. For more details on how to apply for the necessary permits, kindly refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or contact us.

Most schools do not practice calling an applicant’s previous school for background checks. However, some schools do require applicants to submit a reference letter or a reference report form usually written by previous school teachers to provide valid insights into their performance and character. Applicants may choose either one as proof of reference.

The cost of studying in a primary and secondary school in Canada is relatively affordable for international students. On average, international day students should expect their tuition fee to range between CAD $16,100 – CAD $45,350 annually while boarding students should expect higher fees of up to CAD $75,000/year. However, schools located in the more popular cities such as Toronto and Ontario will cost higher.

The Canandian immigration department estimates that international students will need at least CAD $10,000 - CAD $12,000 annually in living expenses. Students will need to provide a proof of financial funds to show that they have the means to cover the living costs in Canada in order to apply for a student visa.

The government of Canada encourages international students who have completed their tertiary education in Canada to stay in the country by providing different generous immigration programmes:


Students can apply for Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP) which allows fresh graduates to stay in Canada to look for job opportunities for a period of 8 months to 3 years depending on the individual.


Students can apply for permanent residence in Canada after completing their degree.

We encourage you to do proper research and understand more about studying abroad before making a decision. Read more at our education blog here.

Learn more about the different types of schools in Canada

Types of schools in Canada

Learn more about how to apply to the various schools in Canada

How to apply to Canada schools