SINGAPORE - Thursday is the most exciting day of the week for Sherman Ho.
It is when the NUS High School of Mathematics and Science student gets to mix a dizzying array of chemicals in the lab and watch them froth and fizzle.
"I am glad I am in this school. If I were elsewhere, I think I would be bored out of my mind," said Sherman candidly.
The 13-year-old, who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and Asperger syndrome, clinched a place at his dream school after topping his cohort at Pathlight School with a score of 273 at the Primary School Leaving Examination last year.
He is among a growing number of children with special needs who attend mainstream schools. Their numbers have doubled from about 5,000 to 10,000 in the past five years.
It was a conscious decision for his mother Alice Wee, 42, to place Sherman, who gets restless at times, at a special school. The insurance specialist wanted him to build a strong foundation before moving to a mainstream school.
But the joy of seeing him make it to his dream school was not without trepidation.
On the first day of school in January, Mrs Wee and her husband followed Sherman's school bus closely in their car, worried he would create a commotion.