Like any parent, my husband and I started to explore the possibility of DSA for our DS. We first thought of using the academic domain route, as we thought that our DS’s academics (specifically math) was his only strength. I was naïve and new to the DSA process, especially since my DS is my oldest.
My family visited the secondary school’s open house in mid-2014. To my dismay, I realised after talking to various teachers that the success rates of using the DSA academic route are very slim, even if the kids got Gold/Platinum in Mathematics Olympiad! I was at a loss because we had placed our hopes on the DSA academic route.
It was by chance that while attending the open house, we visited the Shooting CCA booth. My DS pestered me to take him to explore shooting – that’s where I started looking for venues to try out shooting, which eventually led me to the Indoor Air Gun Range at HomeTeamNS@Bukit Batok, run by a shooting school called Altius Global.
Upon arrival at the shooting range, I was surprised to learn that there is actually an avenue for DSA via shooting as a CCA! While I didn’t count my chances, I signed my eager DS up for a few sessions, mainly for his interest.
The assessment given by the coach after the 3 sessions indicated that my DS does indeed have flair in the sport. However the coach advised us that the time left to train for DSA might not be sufficient. However, upon my DS’s pestering, I signed him on for another 12-session. Why not, I thought, it could serve as a de-stress platform for him instead of studying non-stop for 24/7!
I never expected what would happen next. After each session, I saw in my DS the glowing enthusiasm and passion in the sports, and was so impressed by his concentration and level of technique. For a moment I imagined if he could go on to be the next Jasmine Ser!
I began to ask myself, should I allow my DS to actively try to DSA through Sports Shooting? I struggled with the other considerations: time, cost, distance (I reside in East side), the need for him to juggle heavy academic requirements and especially the uncertainty. I didn’t want to build my DS’s hopes, only to bring them crashing down if he were to be unsuccessful.
I went on with my research and realized that shooting is indeed a very uncommon sport. Furthermore, only Primary 4 and above can join shooting. Therefore it has a fairer playing field compared to other sports with kids who start so young! I was also impressed by the shooting school’s good credentials and track record in past years’ DSA candidates. I sat down with the head coach and discussed with her our objectives and plans. She was very professional and objective and gave me a good insight of the programme.
I finally decided to adopt an open mind and allowed my DS to give it a shot (pun unintended).
Had I been adamant in applying my DS through academics and not taken the decision to adopt the DSA sports domain path, I strongly believe that my DS would not have gotten into his dream school – Raffles Institution. Above all, I am glad that he has found something he enjoys doing – more shooting in real life also means less computer games to worry about! I am thankful to God for showing us the light in guiding my DS to be at the right place at the right time. I am so blessed to get this happy ending that I never would have expected.
I am a happy mother today, and will be most glad to share this rewarding experience with anyone.