atans1

Making Every Primary School A Good School

In Uncategorized on 05/10/2015 at 5:10 am

Even the most hardcore PAP voting parent can’t believe “Every School A Good School” unless he or she is as stupid as an anti-PAP cybernut like TRE’s Oxygen or Dosh or their hero Roy. What with elite schools and six- yr programmes, “Every School A Good School” sounds like another comment by would-be comedian Tharman. “Every School A Good School”: so why got elite schools and six-yr programmes?

—————————————————————————————————————Every School A Good School

Our goal in education is to provide every child with the opportunity to develop holistically and maximise his or her potential. In creating opportunities for all, MOE will ensure that every school is a good school.

(MOE website)

———————————————————————————————————————

Here’s a simple, elegant but radical solution that will every neighbourhood primary school a great school.

Let the top pupils at every primary school be guaranteed admission to RI or Hwa Chong; let the next-ranked pupils at each school take a spot at the next-most competitive secondary school, and so on. Those from the “poorer” schools (schools where the bulk of parents earn the median wage or less) may have lower test scores, but, given their circumstances, they will have actually achieved more than those whose parents pay and pay for tuition etc.

This will encourage the kids in neigbourhood primary schools to do their best (which is a good thing in itself: and very hard to encourage) and striking a blow for meritocracy.  The kids do not have to accept their lot in life. Aspiration or “You don’t have to set limits on your talent and your ambition” isn’t juz meaningless drivel*.

Teachers at these schools will be motivated to do their best.

There is a play running in London about the angst that parents are facing in choosing where to educate their kids.

Alia [a scholar-type kid and FT] offers a simple solution: let the top pupils at every school, whether Eton [A really posh school where the UK’s elite send their kids to. The present PM’s old school] or a failing comprehensive [think neighbourhood school in a HDB estate where the residents earn less than the median wage], be guaranteed admission to Oxford or Cambridge; let the next-ranked pupils at each school take a spot at the next-most competitive universities, and so on. Those from the poorer schools may have lower test scores, but, given their circumstances, they will have actually achieved more than those whose parents stuffed a bassoon into their hands to help their chances at a posh school or university.

Alia’s solution has an appeal, not only for the pupils or the university, but for those poor anguished parents. To encourage the kids to do their best is hard enough without trying to game the system at the same time. Such a radical change could not only rebalance parents’ incentives, but the schools’ (and top universities’) populations themselves, striking a blow for meritocracy. But like any radical reform, it faces so many entrenched interests that it is unlikely to get a shot.

http://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2015/09/review-future-conditional

Yes of course, every secondary school can be a good school too by using the above method for entry to yr 5 and 6 in elite schools, and JCs, but that will will mean giving less room to six-yr programmes, so one step at a time.

For starters, let’s make Every Primary School A Good School. After all we have a new Acting Minister of Education (Schools). He’d surely want to win his spurs to be in the running to be a future PM? But then his priority might be to avoid becoming another Lui or the CEO of NOL?

———————

*The Ministry of Education (MOE) will work towards making the education system more diverse, by taking into account “not just top down national needs but also bottom-up aspirations”, said Acting Education Minister (Higher Education and Skills) Ong Ye Kung, the other acting minister. [Added at 6.45am]

  1. No worries man!! 70% Sinkies voted to have this rubbish spewed on them. Just sit back and enjoy the comedy shows. Hollywood comedy scriptwriters can’t hold a candle next to our PAPpy jokesters.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: