Football injury spurs healthcare passion: How physio undergrad is realising his goals with poly-gained skills (24 May 2023)

"When football is your life, being benched for an entire season is one of the worst things that can happen to you.

But that was exactly what happened to Mr Milton Yeong nine years ago when a severe ankle ligament injury forced him to take a two-month break from his professional football club, the Lion City Sailors – then known as Home United."


Specialised schools like Crest Secondary remain important in S’pore education system: Chan Chun Sing (25 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE - Specialised schools such as Crest Secondary School and Spectra Secondary School will continue to play an integral role in Singapore’s variegated education landscape, Education Minister Chan Chun Sing said on Thursday evening.

“With the roll-out of full subject-based banding, there were many who asked me, ‘will the Ministry of Education (MOE) continue to support Crest and Spectra?’” he said."


Minor Issues: My son failed maths, but got an A for effort (28 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE – School is out and the report books are in.

My 17-year-old son came home with a failing grade for mathematics, but before my husband could say anything, we noticed that beside the result was a column for effort, where he got an A."


June school holidays: New water park, nature camps, Children’s Festival and more (28 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE – The June school holidays provide a much-needed respite for your kids – and you – from academic routines. Make the most of the month-long break to bond with your family at new attractions and activities.

But what if you are preoccupied with work? Enrol them in drop-off programmes that combine fun with learning.

Here are six ideas that will bring out the smiles in pre-schoolers, primary-school kids and teenagers."


No teachers, no academic prerequisites: SUTD challenges traditional learning with new ICT course (28 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE - Imagine a university programme that does not require any academic prerequisites and has no teachers or structured lessons.

That is precisely what the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) is offering - a unique and inclusive skills-based pathway for students to acquire and hone information and communications technology (ICT) skills."


Raffles Institution should remain beacon of hope for students regardless of background: PM Lee (28 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE - Raffles Institution (RI) should continue to exemplify Singapore’s inclusive spirit and egalitarian ethos, as well as remain a beacon of hope and opportunity for every student regardless of background, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as the school marked its 200th anniversary.

“There are many good choices of schools in Singapore, and being admitted to RI is only one of the many paths to a good education,” Mr Lee wrote in a speech that Education Minister Chan Chun Sing delivered on his behalf at RI’s Bicentennial Founder’s Day celebrations on Sunday morning."


New $4,000 study grant for students with special educational needs (30 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE - Mr Benedict Lim, 23, is hard of hearing and strapped for cash, but that has not stopped him from pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at Nanyang Technological University (NTU).

The second-year undergraduate is hoping that a new study grant, for which he is applying, may ease his financial troubles."


Social workers cruise around in van to ‘hang out’ with at-risk youth, tackle issues like vaping (30 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE – Parents often tell their children to be wary of unknown vehicles that approach them, but a new electric van driven by social workers around Jurong may prove to be an exception.

The van, used in outreach efforts by non-profit group Youth Guidance Outreach Services (YGOS), travels to “hot spots” where at-risk youth tend to hang out."


Yusof Ishak Secondary School’s new Punggol campus wins award for innovation (30 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE – When it was first known some years ago that Yusof Ishak Secondary School would be moving to a new campus in Punggol, the school’s leaders sprang into action.

The school, which was formerly in Bukit Batok, decided to ask its students, alumni, teachers and parents how they would reimagine the campus."


New standard to help operators prepare suitable portion sizes, safe and nutritious food for children (31 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE – Care centre operators and their food service providers will get more help to prepare safe and nutritious food with appropriate portion sizes for infants and children up to 12 years old with the launch of a new standard on Wednesday.

The Singapore Standard 692 Guidelines for Nutrition and Food Services for Infants and Children, or SS 692, cover a range of areas. These include food safety, hygiene and quality practices; food intolerances, hypersensitivity and allergy management; nutrition care; and menu planning."


Brighter future in their hands: Students discover solar energy as alternative power source to safeguard the planet (3 June 2023)

"Groups of students from CHIJ St Joseph’s Convent gathered excitedly around the model house. The 1m x 1m model, big enough for a student to snuggle herself inside, sported a purplish-black solar panel on one side of its roof.

Young faces grinned in anticipation as the facilitator explained that they would get to try their hand at building their own model house and learn about how solar power is generated. Breaking into smaller groups, the students fiddled and fixed up their individual palm-sized house model kits."


Minor Issues: Don’t let your smartphone sabotage your relationships with loved ones (4 June 2023)

"SINGAPORE – Recently, I have been paying attention to paying attention.

I realised I have been more distracted than usual – and the main culprit is my smartphone."


How to get an offer from a polytechnic before sitting the O levels (4 June 2023)

"SINGAPORE – Before the O-level results were released in January, about 5,600 students had already received an offer for a place in one of the five polytechnics."

This was through the polytechnic Early Admissions Exercise (EAE), an aptitude-based process that allows students to apply for and receive conditional offers before getting their final grades."


Fun With Kids: Free-to-play mega inflatables, marine animal sculptures, science video contest (4 June 2023)

"SINGAPORE – Make family time all the more special with these ideas and activities.

Play: Looney Tunes-themed inflatables

Iconic Looney Tunes characters have made their way to Suntec City, and so should your kids."


Time to make your school choices: MOE’s SchoolFinder directory can help (2 May 2023)

"Congrats! Your child has crossed an education milestone and it’s time to embark on the next. Let SchoolFinder help with the research, starting with a comprehensive listing of schools and what they offer. Read on to find out how parents can shortlist options based on location, cut-off points and other filters, by using this online directory developed by the Ministry of Education (MOE).

By Lim Jun Kang

Ready to choose a suitable school for your child? We agree that it’s an important decision.

You could be registering your child for Primary 1. Or sitting down with your child and deciding on your secondary or post-secondary options together.

Whichever the case, you are looking for a good fit for your child’s learning needs and interests, and some research is needed.

Where could you start?

SchoolFinder, of course. It is a comprehensive online directory developed by the Ministry of Education (MOE), to help parents and students to explore the options available at all education levels. Users can filter and search for options to consider, and find useful information on what they offer."


Open House for Primary Schools 2023 (9 May 2023)

"What do you need to know before visiting open houses with your child? Read on for more details on how you can support your child in choosing a primary school that’s suitable for them!

A peek into the school grounds, meeting the teachers, experiencing each school’s culture – open houses provide opportunities to support you and your child choose a suitable primary school. Here are some points to keep in mind as your child embarks on this exciting new chapter in their life.

While attending the open houses for primary schools, consider the following pointers:

1. Your child’s strengths and interests

Talk to your child about what they like to do. What are their hobbies, be it playing sports, making music, creating art, or even gaming, and what else they would like to try. Discuss their likes and dislikes about their lessons and activities in kindergarten. Then, think about the primary schools that can provide your child with the opportunities to deepen their interests or explore new areas."


Open House for Secondary Schools 2023 (9 May 2023)

"What do you need to know before visiting open houses with your child? Read on for more details on how you can support your child in choosing a secondary school that’s suitable for them!

A peek into the school grounds, meeting the teachers, experiencing each school’s culture – open houses provide opportunities to support you and your child choose a suitable secondary school. Here are some points to keep in mind as your child embarks on this exciting new chapter in their life.

1. Have a conversation with your child about their strengths and interests

Find out what appeals to them and what worries them most about going to secondary school. Ask them about their favourite lessons and activities in school and let them share what they think are their strengths and interests.

You can also ask them to list what they enjoy about their school experiences in order of preference. This could range from the learning environment to academic programmes to CCAs and even the canteen food! This will give you a better understanding of what they would like to have in their secondary school."


‘The future looks rosy’: why this dad isn’t afraid of the rise of AI (11 May 2023)

"Humans want to outdo one another, but we also want to stay alive, says AI professional and father-of-four, Mr Tang Yu, on why he embraces a tech-dominant future. He thinks of AI tools as challenging its users to be even more creative and critical thinkers, and wants his children not to fear its rise but to deploy it responsibly.

Amidst all the ongoing chatter about whether the growing power of artificial intelligence (AI) should be feared, AI professional Tang Yu is convinced that the future is bright for his four children.

As head of customer service for a robotics firm that helps businesses implement automation solutions, Mr Tang sells the advantages of AI for a living.

He also understands its limits.

“People fear robots and AI because they don’t understand – or they overestimate – the intelligence of the technology. But it has its limitations too,” he explains. “We as humans will always have the upperhand.”

His children are between six months and 13 years old, and he has been familiarising the older ones with its capabilities. He believes that early exposure can help them seize that upperhand and navigate the future more confidently."


5 kids, 5 different schools (11 May 2023)

"Since each child is unique, and every school is different, it made sense to tech CEO Chris Yeo that his five children would end up in five different schools. He shares tips on how the family uncovered their children’s interests and aptitudes and found schools to match.

Setting off in five different directions for the morning school run may seem counterintuitive, but for Mr Chris Yeo, CEO at DOKU, a B2B payment platform, this makes perfect sense.

He and his homemaker wife, Elsa, view each of their five children as unique, who will thrive when in a school environment best suited to each of them. Their brood includes 16-year-old triplets Joshua, Lucas and Theodore; 14-year-old Aaron (Secondary 2); and 9-year-old Beth (Primary 3).

“It boils down to two basic things: The interest of the child, and academic fit and ability. Because of the first bucket, we are always trying to find out what the interest of each child is by exposing them to a wide variety of activities when young and watching to see if they enjoy it or not,” says Mr Yeo.

All the children went to Nanyang Primary School, where Mr Yeo is an alumnus. But when it came to choosing a secondary school, the Yeos sought to match schools to their children’s emerging strengths and needs, as Mrs Yeo prepped herself for some crazy back-to-back chauffeuring duties.

Here, Mr Yeo shares the steps they took to get a better school fit:

1. Start your research early

The research started when the children were in primary school. As each school offers different programmes, subjects and co-curricular activities (CCAs), the Yeos talked to friends with older children to learn more about the choices available. They then shortlisted secondary schools with strengths in their children’s areas of interests, to further bring out their potential."


More games, more fun: What the National School Games’ expanded competition format means (18 May 2023)

"Student-athletes competing in Table Tennis and Tennis at the National School Games can now compete in more matches than before, as new ‘Classification’ and ‘League’ formats kick in. This applies to more sports later. Find out what these new formats are about, and how it enhances the students’ sporting experience.

By Lim Jun Kang

The annual National School Games (NSG) kicked off earlier in January, with more than 60,000 student athletes competing across 29 sports this year.

There’s good news for those taking part in three sports – Table Tennis, Tennis and Water Polo – as their chance at playing increases with the new ‘Classification’ and ‘League’ competition formats in place.

This applies to those at the upper primary and lower secondary levels, and will eventually be rolled out to all levels and across all sports.

What does that mean, and how will student-athletes benefit?

New competition format, more playing opportunities

The traditional zonal format sees schools competing solely within their school zone, where some schools will only get to play a maximum of three matches, depending on their performance.

In the new format, those taking part in table tennis and tennis (in both Senior Division for primary schools where students aged 11 to 13 participate) will first face off against other schools in a Classification round. They are seeded based on their previous NSG’s results, playing at least three games in this round."


After JC, she takes the polytechnic route to nurse her healthcare dreams (18 May 2023)

"Adilah Binte Affandi was unsure of herself and her career goals when she was a JC student. But the moment she joined the nursing programme at Ngee Ann Polytechnic, it was like a switch had been flipped. Here, she talks about the ups and downs of her education journey, and how she found the path that’s right for her, albeit a longer route.

By Sabrina Lee

Adilah Binte Affandi’s passion for healthcare began at a young age. While accompanying her aunt to a gynaecologist appointment, Adilah watched in wonder as the ultrasound captured the baby’s features and movements. It was a thrilling moment for the six-year-old.

She also remembered the compassionate care her aunt received from the nurses and doctors, who went above and beyond to make her aunt feel comfortable. Adilah recalled thinking at that moment, ‘I want to be able to do that for people too.’ The warmth and empathy shown left an indelible mark on Adilah, and she knew right then that she wanted to pursue a career in healthcare to help others in similar situations feel safe, comfortable, and cared for.

Fast forward to today and Adilah is now thriving in her third year of the nursing programme at Ngee Ann Polytechnic (NP), but this moment came after a few difficult twists and turns in her journey."


Switching from polytechnic to junior college: The road less travelled (18 May 2023)

"When it comes to education, some believe the path to success is straight and narrow, while others may change their minds and take a detour that completely alters their journey.

Schoolbag speaks to Enzo Koh, a J2 student at Jurong Pioneer Junior College, on why he took a leap of faith and transferred from polytechnic to junior college after a year, and how he has grown from the decision.

By Lim Jun Kang

Enzo Koh, a J2 student at Jurong Pioneer Junior College, has always enjoyed mathematics. Tackling complex equations and formulas, and the satisfaction of cracking a problem sum, appealed to him. This passion for problem-solving came in handy when he reached an unusual checkpoint in life: he had this niggling regret about his school choice.

By calculating the risks and assessing the odds, he found confidence to take a leap of faith – to make an unconventional move to transfer from a polytechnic to a Junior College (JC). It turned out to be a winning solution for him.

From indecision and uncertainty, to unexpected clarity

Back in 2020, when Enzo was in Secondary 4, he had the opportunity to apply for the Polytechnic Early Admissions Exercise (EAE). Students who are performing well in school can apply for, and receive conditional offers for admission to polytechnics prior to receiving their final grades, during the exercise.

Ngee Ann Polytechnic’s Diploma in Accountancy appeared to be a good course fit for him, given his passion in Mathematics and his impression that an accounting career offers financial stability. Enzo went on to secure a conditional spot in the course but was soon faced with a dilemma when he received his O-Level results later."


His third-choice course at ITE connected him to the first-choice field of robotics (19 May 2023)

“Don’t let fear or insecurity stop you from trying new things,” says ITE Higher Nitec graduate Muhammad Ezekeyle Ezra, who stumbled from sports science into engineering. He now dreams new dreams in the field of robotics.

By Sabrina Lee

When we don’t get what we ask for, what follows? Muhammad Ezekeyle Ezra provides a poignant example of how setbacks can be a blessing in disguise, even uncovering what are his latent abilities.

In 2019, when Ezekeyle was in Secondary 3, doing well at the subject Exercise and Sports Science prompted him to consider pursuing the field further. Eager to secure a place in Republic Polytechnic’s Sport and Exercise Science programme, he applied for the Polytechnic Early Admission Exercise (EAE) when he was in Secondary 4. The EAE, which assesses students’ potential rather than relying solely on final grades, offers a unique opportunity for applicants to demonstrate their abilities.

He was feeling pretty confident about his study path until tragedy struck: That year, his grandmother passed away, and his grandfather had a stroke, which led to money problems in the family. To help make ends meet, he took on multiple part-time jobs and delivery work, often at the expense of his studies. Given these circumstances, he was unable to meet the EAE criteria to pursue his desired course at Polytechnic."


From Latin dancing, he pivoted to gerontology and helping the elderly (19 May 2023)

"The dancer was enroute to becoming a personal trainer when he decided to explore a less well-known field, gerontology.

Uncover how Temasek Polytechnic student Ethan Khoo found his niche.

By Sabrina Lee

Ethan Khoo, a student in his third year at Temasek Polytechnic (TP), has always been passionate about fitness, dance and the movement of the body.

His talent for Latin dance was apparent from the age of seven and led him to compete in various countries, including Hong Kong, India, and Thailand.

As he continued to dance competitively, Ethan became more aware of his body and its movements. As an ectomorph, he found it challenging to gain muscle and realised he needed to bulk up to improve his appearance on stage.

“I sought help from a friend who was a fitness trainer, and together we developed a specialised workout plan,” says Ethan. His friend also taught him about proper nutrition and how to track his progress.

Through hard work and dedication, Ethan began to see significant improvements in his physique over time. This transformative experience inspired him to want to help others overcome their own limitations."


She overcame her fear of Maths and is now crunching numbers for a living (19 May 2023)

"HP sales operations analyst Christine Kunasekaran had big dreams but struggled with Maths. She got around this by tackling her fears head-on and strengthening her foundation at ITE. Schoolbag finds out the journey she took to do what she loves today.

By Sabrina Lee

It’s hard to believe when Ms Christine Kunasekaran tells you that Mathematics had been her undoing when she was in school, but she admits, “I was getting 40 out of 100 on most tests.”

Looking at what she does today as a sales operations analyst at Hewlett Packard, scrutinising sheets of data on a daily basis, wouldn’t you need a head for numbers?

“It took me more time to comprehend them," says Ms Kunasekaran, who found Maths concepts challenging to grasp in school. Those difficulties cost her good grades at her O-Level exams, but rather than fuss over the conventional junior college-university route, she decided to enrol at the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) – to face up to her fears in Maths.

"I didn't have a specific career path in mind, but I knew that Maths was fundamental to almost everything in the world. More importantly, I wanted to tackle my weakness head-on," she explains of her decision, “My teachers also told me, ‘Maths modules at ITE will be foundational and hands-on. Work on your failures and learn from them’.”

And so, she applied for a National ITE Certificate (Nitec) in Precision Engineering. "Adjusting to modules such as machining that involved Maths took some time,” she says. Keeping a cool head, she braced herself to tackle the subject she had been fearing for years."


Not all shots have to be emo, and other pro-tips from winners of OSOS photo and video contest (23 May 2023)

"What makes a ‘good’ photograph? How do you capture something invisible, like school culture?

Schoolbag picks the brains of three winners from Ministry of Education’s annual Our Schools, Our Stories Photo and Video Contest 2022, to get the stories behind their entries.

By Lim Jun Kang

The Ministry of Education’s annual Our Schools, Our Stories (OSOS) Photo and Video Contest attracts thousands of entries each year from school staff and students. What makes a winning entry?

Three of the 2022 winners share their pro-tips with us."


‘My kids’ future will be shaped by lifelong learners’ (31 May 2023)

"At work, HR professional Averil Lee champions the attitude of improving for life by learning for life. At home, she inculcates the same values in her three children who are in primary school, because it’s never too young to enjoy learning.

Does learning ever stop? What does lifelong learning look like? How can we cultivate curiosity and an appetite for knowledge that won’t dry up with age? These are not easy questions for anyone, let alone a mother busy with her newborns.

But HR professional Ms Averil Lee found herself grappling with these thoughts as her three little ones entered the world one by one.

From her 15 years in human resource, and in her current role as a training specialist in a global pharmaceutical firm, she has seen how the workplace has evolved for the better to embrace diversity and change. What helps workers navigate change is their underlying ability to learn.

“School and work today for us are very much different from when I was a student,” says Ms Lee. “We are now looking at a future shaped by lifelong learners. It is such a positive thing, because lifelong learning is an attitude that isn’t limited by your learning style, whether it is through textbooks or through experiences.”

Today, her children are six, eight, and nine years old. She shares how she has been giving them a headstart in life by cultivating their desire to learn."


7 Things Every Parent Can Do to Keep Kids Cyber-Safe: A tech dads special (31 May 2023)

"The Internet may have transformed how children learn and connect with others, but it also exposes children to risks like cyberbullying, harmful content, and digital addiction. What can parents do to keep their kids safe online? Schoolbag speaks to four fathers who work in the technology industry for some tips.

Digital technologies are here to stay as a staple of daily life, and as a tech parent, Mr Hanis accepts rather than fights how attractive the screen is to children.

“We try as much as possible to enter their world by being with them as they explore the Internet,” says Mr Hanis, who works at Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp. His role as a Regional Investigator requires him to conduct investigations into security incidents related to his company.

“We learn a lot from observing our kids interact with one another, using words, songs and game references that they pick up online.” This helps him and his wife to relate better and more meaningfully with their kids, and not sound disconnected from their world, when offering advice and words of caution."


Start of 2023 Direct School Admission Exercises and ITE and Polytechnic Early Admissions Exercise (3 May 2023)

"The Direct School Admission (DSA) Exercise for admission to secondary schools and junior colleges (JCs) in 2024 will open for applications from 4 May 2023. Separately, applications for early admission to the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) and polytechnics based on course-specific aptitude and interests will start from 24 May and 5 June 2023 respectively."


Speech by Minister Chan Chun Sing at Raffles Institution Bicentennial Lecture, at Raffles Institution (16 May 2023)

"Towards a Better Age

Mr Bey Soo Khiang, Chairman of the Board of Governors

Members of the Board of Governors

Old Rafflesians' Association and Raffles Parents' Association

Mr Frederick Yeo, Principal

Guests, friends of RI and fellow Rafflesians


1. Good afternoon. Always happy to be back in RI.

2. First, let me congratulate RI for celebrating and commemorating two hundred years of illustrious history."


Strong Performance by Singapore Students in Reading Literacy Despite COVID-19 Pandemic: International Study (16 May 2023)

"Singapore's Primary 4 (P4) students continued to perform well in reading literacy by international standards, according to the results from the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) 2021. Conducted every five years, PIRLS is an international study that measures students' reading literacy at Grade 4 (equivalent to P4 in Singapore), an important transition point in our children's development as readers, when they would have learned how to read, and are starting to read to learn. A representative sample of 6,719 randomly selected P4 students across all 183 primary schools in Singapore participated in the study from October to November 2020."


Student Dancers' Showcase of "Aspirations" at the 4th Chinese Street Dance Competition 2023 (20 May 2023)

"Around 170 students from 18 schools participated in the fourth edition of the Chinese Street Dance Competition this year. Jointly organised by the Committee to Promote Chinese Language (CPCLL) and Mandarin edutainment platform MaxKids, the competition aims to promote the learning of Chinese language and culture through music and dance."


2023 Primary One Registration Exercise to Start from 4 July 2023 (23 May 2023)

"The registration of children for admission to Primary One (P1) in 2024 will open from Tuesday, 4 July 2023 to Tuesday, 31 October 2023."


680 Students Showcase News Reporting Skills at the 2nd Young Reporter News Challenge 2023 (26 May 2023)

"680 students from 76 secondary schools participated in the second edition of the Young Reporter News Challenge (《我来报新闻》挑战赛) this year, which introduced a new category, "News Bites 60", to challenge students' ability to create video news reels of up to 60 seconds meant for social media platforms. This is in addition to previous categories to produce a news clip on current affairs or to conduct news analysis on designated topics. The new category seeks to broaden students' knowledge on news reporting techniques, and provide exposure to different genres of news reporting."


New Character and Citizenship Education Centre to Deepen Research in Pedagogy and Practice (30 May 2023)

"To further Singapore's expertise and capabilities in Character and Citizenship Education (CCE), the Ministry of Education (MOE) and National Institute of Education (NIE) have jointly established the Singapore Centre for CCE."


Lee Kuan Yew Centennial Fund Launched to Support About 2,000 Students Annually Through Scholarships and Programmes (30 May 2023)

"Fund aims to inspire 1,000 IHL student leaders and uplift up to 1,000 ITE and polytechnic students from disadvantaged backgrounds who demonstrate resilience and potential

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Mr Lawrence Wong launched the Lee Kuan Yew Centennial Fund, which has been established with donations from the private and people sectors to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Mr Lee Kuan Yew's birth in 2023. The Fund will support education-related initiatives to develop young leaders in Singapore, including the Singapore Young Leaders Programme (SYLP) which was also launched by DPM Wong."


Pre-University Seminar 2023 – Towards Our Shared Future: SG75 (30 May 2023)

"550 participants from 30 pre-university institutions have come together in person today to kick off Pre-University Seminar 2023. Co-organised by the Ministry of Education and Jurong Pioneer Junior College, the theme for this year's seminar is 'Towards Our Shared Future: SG75'. Students will have the opportunity to engage in dialogues on Singapore's development, identity and values, as well as place in the world amidst global complexities. Through rich discussions and interactions with people of diverse backgrounds, students will be able to glean insights into a range of issues, policies and perspectives, to enable them to envision and co-create our shared future together. This year's Seminar returns to a fully residential format at Nanyang Technological University (NTU)."


Singapore’s young research talents clinch seven awards at Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2023 (31 May 2023)

"Eight Singapore students competed against more than 1,600 students from 64 countries, regions, and territories at the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) 2023. Regeneron ISEF is one of the world's largest annual pre-college science fairs that provides a platform for top science and engineering talents to showcase their projects."


More help for workers, especially ITE and poly grads, to 'take ownership' of career and training: DPM Wong (1 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — More help will be provided for workers to take ownership of their careers and training, with special attention paid to those in vocational and technical roles, said Deputy Prime Minister Lawrence Wong on Monday (May 1).

Speaking to around 1,400 labour movement leaders, workers and tripartite partners during the National Trades Union Congress (NTUC) May Day rally held at Suntec Convention and Exhibition Centre, Mr Wong said that the Government will shift SkillsFuture to a “higher gear”.

He added that the Government will help workers — especially Institute of Technical Education and polytechnic graduates — deepen their skills through different pathways so they can secure better salaries and career paths in the professions they have trained in."


library@esplanade to close on June 30, collections and programmes to move to National Library Building (2 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — The library@esplanade will close on June 30, with the current premises to be converted into arts and commercial spaces.

The collections and programmes from the library will be moved to the National Library Building on Victoria Street, the National Library Board (NLB) said on Tuesday (May 2).

Programmes such as recitals, movie screenings, jazz appreciation workshops and showcases of original works will be available at the new location as early as August. Other popular offerings, including the music studio, movies, music scores and books, will be made available in the National Library Building from the second half of 2024."


Gen Z Speaks: I was fixated on studying the sciences, even though I wasn't good at them. It wasn't too late to switch tracks (7 May 2023)

"In my lower secondary days, I was a consistent top scorer with a near perfect score for all subjects.

Life was going to be a breeze, or so I was told. Everyone around me said that having good grades was a clear marker of success and that my educational journey would be a smooth-sailing one.

Without thinking too much about it, I was admitted into a class for those taking nine-subject combinations in the O-Levels, believing that this was the norm for students who were top 10 percenters."


#trending: ‘Clean and modern’ or plain ‘lazy’? Netizens divided over logo for new University of the Arts Singapore (12 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Singapore’s first and only arts university, the University of the Arts Singapore (UAS), unveiled its logo on Wednesday (May 10) but the reaction it has received from the public has been lukewarm at best.

The logo was first revealed at the inaugural UAS Arts Symposium held at Lasalle College of the Arts by Minister for Education Chan Chun Sing, and it has since generated some buzz online.

A discussion thread about it on online forum Reddit has had more than 130 comments as of Friday afternoon and more than 450 upvotes, which indicates that it has high user engagement or an agreement with the topic."


Gen Z Speaks: I started an AI interest group in school. Working with humans — not computers — was the bigger challenge (14 May 2023)

"Before the days of ChatGPT and Midjourney, I remember a time when the field of artificial intelligence (AI) was regarded as a buzzword for automating mundane tasks away.

Perhaps it wasn’t seen among my peers as being on the cutting edge. In my first year at Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) in 2020, most of the tech interest groups were mainly related to app development and cybersecurity.

AI was not something that could compel enough students to want to start a collective of like-minded individuals."


Students quiz Chan Chun Sing, who urges RI to help 'bring out the best' in wider education system (16 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Seven secondary students confidently strode to the microphone on Tuesday (May 16) before an audience of about 500 at one of the nation's most well-known schools to pose a series of incisive questions to Education Minister Chan Chun Sing.

Their questions delved into a wide array of topical subjects, from addressing educational disparities, and navigating the delicate balance between mental well-being and academic success, to forging a society that embraces and values all vocations.

The minister gamely tackled the questions from the students who came from secondary schools such as Raffles Institution (RI), Ngee Ann Secondary School and Bartley Secondary School."


'Not about leeching off parents': Why this Singaporean medical student set up GapyearSG portal to help 'gappers' find support (18 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — The idea of a gap year, also known as a sabbatical or break from studies for students, bring to mind images of young people travelling to far-flung places or taking beachside vacations, blissfully enjoying a lengthy and worry-free period of relaxation on their parents' dime before "adulting" starts for them.

Yet, these are precisely the stereotypes that 21-year-old medical student Gabrielle Lee Chuwen Joly wants to shatter.

The young Singaporean founder of the two-year-old GapyearSG website said: “For some, the year off may be spent getting help for their mental health, improving themselves and avoiding burnout. Discovering hobbies that you really enjoy can help you with de-stressing in the future."


Singapore students with depression, anxiety symptoms miss 24 days of school yearly on average: Study (19 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — When 19-year-old Fitriah found herself displaying symptoms of depression and getting easily overwhelmed at school, she did not seek professional help or a formal diagnosis due to the high costs involved.

Instead, she admits that she took “mental health days” off school when she needed them, which led to her faking multiple illnesses over the years to cover up her mental health challenges.

The young woman, who wished to be known only as Ms Fitriah, told TODAY that her fragile mental state dragged her down from being a top scorer at school to “flopping horribly”."


Kids from lower-income homes get boost from OCBC-MSF volunteer initiative to pursuit sports and other interests (22 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Ms Myca Marla would like to give her two daughters, aged 11 and six, more opportunities to play and explore sports that interest them but as the family's sole breadwinner, she often lacks the time or money to do so.

“I didn’t have enough time, and also (for) a private tutor, when they join some of the sports, we need to pay quite a lot of money,” the 30-year-old said. She works part-time in the food-and-beverage industry.

Her family is one of 100 lower-income families that will be supported by the “Families100 Programme by OCBC”, launched by the bank in partnership with the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF) on Monday (May 22)."


Primary 1 registration for 2024 to start on July 4; previous year's application data available online (23 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Primary 1 registration for admission to schools in 2024 will begin on July 4, the Ministry of Education (MOE) said on Tuesday (May 23).

It is compulsory for children born between Jan 2, 2017 and Jan 1, 2018, both dates inclusive, to participate in this exercise or be enrolled in a Junior 1 or Primary 1 programme of a special education (SPED) school.

From this year, parents can use the new online registration portal for all five phases of the exercise — Phases 1, 2A, 2B, 2C and 2C Supplementary — to register their child in their chosen school."


Youths invited to carry out year-long community projects to address municipal issues like noise, clutter (26 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Young people aged 15 to 35 are invited to submit ideas to solve municipal issues such as corridor clutter, neighbourhood noise and irresponsible pet ownership, the Municipal Services Office (MSO) and National Youth Council (NYC) said on Friday (May 26).

In a joint statement, the agencies said youths will be mentored and provided with up to S$10,000 per project to pilot their ideas, which can include "public education campaigns, community outreach, production of collaterals, and behavioural insights interventions".

Successful participants have a year to implement their projects."


Parents lament higher school bus fares, longer travel time for their children as shortage of drivers persists (26 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — When school began for Mr Sunil Sabnani’s eight-year-old daughter earlier this year, he saw how some parents were frustrated because their children were dropped off at the wrong locations by the school buses.

“It was a complete nightmare,” the 50-year-old who works in the public service told TODAY.

“The kids were not being picked up at their scheduled locations so parents had to scramble in the morning and take their kids to school, or kids were dropped off at the wrong location because it was a new bus company.”


Gen Y Speaks: Wheelchair-bound since 17, I finally found a firm that values inclusivity because I refuse to give up (28 May 2023)

"When I was 17, I experienced complications from chemotherapy during my leukaemia relapse and I was paralysed from the waist down.

Since then, this four-wheeled device I use to get around the city has become an integral part of my daily life and identity.

But as a teenager, I never allowed my condition to keep me down."


RI brings back football CCA for juniors, announces more admission pathways on 200th anniversary bash (28 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — For more than two decades, Year 1 to Year 4 students at Raffles Institution (RI) have not been able to take up football as a co-curricular activity (CCA).

That will change from next year, RI principal Frederick Yeo announced to cheers and applause on Sunday (May 28) at an event celebrating the school’s 200 years of founding.

“For a start, we will offer football as a twinning sport with Guangyang Secondary School so that our students can train with Guangyang students together,” said Mr Yeo, referring to a neighbourhood school located nearby in Bishan."


Commentary: Today’s Raffles Institution is different from the one I attended, but same fundamentals should endure, including contributions to society (29 May 2023)

"Raffles Institution (RI) celebrates the bicentenary of its founding this year. It also marks the tentative beginning of formal education in Singapore.

RI’s bicentenary is not so much about the venerable institution itself; it is certainly not about the founder of Singapore and RI, Sir Stamford Raffles. In fact, until the 1860s, RI was known as the Singapore Institution.

Instead, it is an apt occasion to reflect and to update the role of education in a multiracial society in an ever-changing world, including how schools like RI can contribute to the betterment of Singaporean society and the world."


6 people hospitalised after gastroenteritis outbreak at 3 MindChamps preschools (31 May 2023)

"SINGAPORE — Six people were hospitalised following a gastroenteritis outbreak at three MindChamps preschools, authorities said in a news release on Tuesday (May 30).

A total of 89 people — 79 children and 10 staff members — from the preschools at Bishan, Changi Airport and Tanglin reported symptoms of gastroenteritis after consuming food prepared by Nosh Cuisine between May 17 and 29.

Those hospitalised are in stable condition, said the Ministry of Health (MOH), the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) and the Singapore Food Agency (SFA) said in a joint press release."


Group of NTU students band together to push for greater transparency, more financial aid (6 June 2023)

"SINGAPORE — A group of students, including financial aid recipients, from the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) are banding together to push their university to relook how financial aid is distributed to students.

Among their concerns are that NTU’s financial aid amounts seem lower than other universities', as well as transparency over the eligibility criteria.

They also claimed that bursaries were often disbursed to students after school fees were due, affecting students’ ability to pay their fees."