The study cited the Republic’s focus on producing graduates with digital skills. I asked Dr Ridzuan Abd Rahim at the Ministry what foreign visitors miss about Singapore, and he emphasised the effort which goes into effective communications and thinking about the flow of information: success, he argued, rested on excellent implementation. Singapore has been described as a country where each ethnic group had to give up something in order to achieve something greater collectively. In many other parts of the world, the principal is often more clearly the head of a school, and less so a system leader. The issue of how the Singapore education system is too stressful, however, is one that is unlikely to be resolved easily. (How do you avoid it? for Holdsworth updates, learning resources and inspiration, Be the kind of leader who shares, not hoards. Singapore’s secondary system provides different tracks and subjects to meet a range of abilities and needs. Is this cost worth it? In 1966, Singapore’s Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew, said: “Just as a country is as good as its citizens, so its citizens are, really, only as good as their teachers.” As a result of this mindset, the teaching profession is lifted up as a respectable profession with competitive salaries and professional development opportunities. The school-education approach has not moved in tandem with the rest of the changes that time and technology have brought about globally. No single thing in Singapore left me thinking: ‘We have to do that’. Education in Singapore: 1) Making sense of Singapore’s priorities Ng: One major strength is the great diversity within the system, which allows for pockets of excellence and many innovative practices throughout the country. Holdsworth: As someone who has helped train most of the principals in your education system, what is the most common challenge that Singapore principals face, and what advice do you offer? Instead, we increased spending from $8 billion to $8.7 billion. I don’t mean this by way of criticism: something amazing is happening. Education in Singapore: 8) Which policies can England borrow? Singapore’s education system has been much lauded for its achievements in ... and improve teaching and learning in the areas tested. These are all laudable features, but the practicums are no longer than in many other countries (NCEE, 2016); the observations are no more frequent, and there seems to be no secret reflective protocol improving Singaporean teachers’ experiences of training. Thanks another very interesting post. Education in Singapore: 2) The pressure on students Moreover, teachers, academics, teacher educators and policy-makers know one another, having all progressed within the same, small system. Dr. Lindsay Whorton, president of The Holdsworth Center, answers six questions about how the nonprofit has pivoted during the global pandemic to continue its mission of helping public school districts build deeper leadership capacity. To build communication skills, leaders must ensure they are not “hoarding” four important things – information, power, praise and their true self. It is relatively easy to find an excellent school somewhere in a system. Singapore clinched the top spot in human capital measures in the Asian Digital Transformation Index. Education in Singapore: 4) A creative & critical curriculum? These rankings also identify successful countries that can become models for others. We believe that in hard times, the way to rise above is with education. Education in Singapore: 7) The secret of Singapore’s success. Disruption is our teacher. In Singapore, Pak Tee Ng explained: “we are systemic… the different parts come together.”  The government’s intentions are put into practice tightly and yet flexibly in what he calls ‘centralised decentralisation’ (2017): there is central direction and consensus around what is to be achieved, but schools are encouraged to find the best way to achieve these goals. Posted on March 19, 2017 By Professor Sing-Kong Lee. Indeed, using the rankings to justify the success or criticise the Ng: Because investing in education is investing in our future. As a result, principals in Singapore work more in a “centralized decentralization” paradigm, an approach that aims to achieve “strategic alignment, tactical empowerment.”. After primary school, children move onto secondary school, which runs for students aged from around 12, to 16 or 17. Blended learning – a reflection on the past six weeks, How do you catch coronavirus? During the financial crisis of 2008-2009, many countries cut their education budgets, but Singapore did the opposite. Singapore’s experience and its current efforts to improve the quality of teaching and learning do have important, if ironic, implications for systems that hope to emulate its success. It is about opening doors for our children and giving them hope and opportunities. Here are five ways to improve education in developing countries: 1. Good teachers are the pillars of a good education system, which develops the citizens and workforce of the country. Singapore’s Education … Education in Singapore: 5) Attracting, developing and keeping teachers, Education in Singapore: 6) ‘The best trained teachers in the world’, Step by step: breaking learning down using behavioural psychology, Do they understand this well enough to move on? Singapore’s education system is relatively a small system, with about 450,000 school-going students educated in a system with roughly 369 schools staffed by a teaching workforce of around 33,000 teachers (Education Statistics Digest, 2015).A compact education system by world standards housed in a small country with a land areas of … Required fields are marked *. I’m particularly grateful to Oliver Caviglioli for his comments on a draft of the system diagram, and to the Singaporean teacher whose comments are included in the discussion of the system. In England, changes to assessment or accountability are often introduced without considering the need for resources, funding, or even time. Consider all the control factors in planning change. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. And maybe that’s my fundamental quarrel with it: that the Singapore education system seems to have no problem with doing that to its frontline employees, its teachers.”. This creates a pool of effective teachers, who go on to staff the Ministry of Education, National Institute of Education and Academy of Singapore Teachers. How has this been achieved? Holdsworth: How do you go about changing the culture of an entire system to reach those new goals? Ng: In Singapore, teachers are nation builders. SINGAPORE - The education system is in the process of being "loosened up" to reduce stress on students, Education Minister Ong Ye Kung said on Wednesday (May 30).. Read more at straitstimes.com. Improving teaching and learning: ideas for heads of department, 28 hinge questions to use, adapt and refine. In 1966, Singapore’s Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew, said: “Just as a country is as good as its citizens, so its citizens are, really, only as good as their teachers.” The Ministry of Education (MOE) frequently transfers principals among schools. Singapore’s success has taken intentional effort, based on consensus over the purpose of education. Often, I thought ‘Our best schools/trainers/trusts already do that.’. Cambridge Assessment (2017). Build greater consensus about the purposes of education. Without a positive attitude, nothing can improve. Some 30% o less academically inclined students take vocational and technical subjects, and schools build close links to institutes o technical education and polytechnics. Singapore’s education system achieves top results on international tests, and Singaporean students like school more than Finnish students (more here). They are our future.”. Image credit: Nicola Sap De Mitri. For example, teaching is attractive, so entry to teaching is selective. Singapore’s educational success is due to the cumulative effect of many aligned elements of the system. What makes professional development effective? Good teachers are the pillars of a good education system, which develops the citizens and workforce of the country. These carefully-selected teachers receive good training, careful induction and excellent professional development. It’s up to each and every teacher to make the narrative of education more positive. Ng: We’re moving our focus from quantity to quality, emphasizing higher order thinking and deeper engagement. With the upcoming changes in Singapore education system, I am confident that the Singapore education system flaws will be overshadowed by its benefits. But visits to other countries have left me in awe of a lesson, a school or a training approach. Ng: I’d say dealing with different demands from different stakeholders. Singapore had created a system of ‘high averages’ with high levels of post-secondary participation in further training and education. Singapore’s Education System To Go Through Major Restructuring. In order to communicate effectively, leaders must learn to go from panic to control quickly. Lower attrition, more students having vocational technical opportunities and closer education-economy, fit was achieved. Education in Singapore: 4) A creative & critical curriculum? Singapore: A teaching model for the 21st century. Holdsworth: In your opinion, how does a principal’s job in the US differ from a principal’s job in Singapore?

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