This tag is associated with 47 posts

Focus On Access – Not Just Affordability – And Broaden Definitions Of Success

Absent from the recent efforts to increase the diversity of students at Singapore’s independent schools – through which students from low- or middle-income families will enjoy fee subsidies and could qualify for a scholarship for out-of-pocket expenses (ST, Dec. 29) – is a focus on access as well as broadened definitions of success. Put otherwise: In addition to improving the affordability of these schools for academically gifted students from low- or middle-income families, there are outstanding questions on the proportion of students who gain access to these schools in the first place, and on students from these families who may not demonstrate the same scholastic aptitudes, and yet have other talents or abilities which ought to be nurtured. Continue reading

Tweaks To DSA Will Not Fix Fundamental Disparities

The latest round of tweaks to the Direct School Admission (DSA) scheme – making applications free of charge and centralising the online submission of applications (TODAY, Nov. 7) – will not fix more fundamental disparities between students and the families they come from. Furthermore these changes, and how they have been communicated thus far, are not helped by the lack of more precise data and information on the demographic and socio-economic characteristics of the students who benefit from the DSA: The employment status of their parents, their housing type and household income, and perhaps even their primary schools (and how they were admitted). Continue reading

NTU Invite-Only Career Fair: Shortsighted To Limit Event Publicity Based On GPA

Given the recent policy moves by the Ministry of Education to reduce emphasis on school-based tests at the primary and secondary school levels, and to correspondingly focus on lifelong learning instead , the apparent decision by the Nanyang Technological University (NTU) to limit publicity of one of its career fair based on grade performance per se – targeting those “from scholar programmes or with a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.75 out of five” (ST, Oct. 7) – appears ill-timed and poorly justified. And if it is true, as per the interview with a final-year undergraduate reported in the paper, that organisers also screened resumes or checked for GPAs at the door, the university is likely to be doing those who were excluded a disservice. Continue reading

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