Review Underway of the Educational System

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Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Chenonceau » Fri Sep 23, 2011 9:07 am

The Straits Times reported on the MOE Workplan Seminar. The Workplan Seminar in the civil service is part of the annual goal planning process undertaken in every Ministry. 2 changes have been announced...

(1) Review of system of assessing schools

I like this very much because...

(a) The current system of assessment pits schools each schools against the other so much so that schools don't like their materials to be shared with other schools. This deprives good students in other schools of good quality materials (and other best practices). Schools should not compete with each other over much.

Indeed, I am wondering if it were possible to set up an online resource of educational materials that teachers can upload, and get paid for with each download. Truly good materials will be often downloaded and thus Teachers on the ground would be encouraged to write more FOR the MOE, instead of FOR the assessment book industry. AND they would not have to leave the service to write and publish and make money.

(b)The current system of assessment uses up too much Teacher time. Teaching has become all about OD refinements (Organizational Development), not Teaching. Because of the current system of school assessment, Teachers are rewarded because they take part in OD activities, which are really about making organizations more efficient. Those promoted may not necessarily be EFFECTIVE EDUCATORS. This way of promoting chases away Teachers who really want to teach.

(c) The current system of assessment does not encourage focus on the right outcomes. I used to give consultancy to the MOE many years ago, and have seen many a Balanced Scorecard. Much of it was results driven and awards driven. These obvious achievements ignore the fact that much of education is a process, not an end. CCA can be just as beneficial to the educational process when one wins NOTHING. The current system motivates schools to channel more resources to CCAs where they have an edge... and of course, the schools will stress the kids. My DD was once made to train at her CCA up to 8.30pm at night every school day and from 9 to 7 on Sat and Sun.

(2) Start Up A Character and Citizenship Education Unit

I like this very much too because...

(a) It directly addresses one of my biggest bugbears with the system, that I have explained here... http://www.kiasuparents.com/kiasu/forum ... 88#p426288

Our Government Does Listen
Personally, I believe that our government DOES LISTEN. It is also sincere about building a relationship with us. However, we also need to make it easy for the government to understand us. To do so, we need to explain our views cogently and coherently. It's hard for the government to understand us if all they can get from us are insults and vulgarities.

Of course, it is early days as yet. There is a plan now... but what about implementation? Implementation remains to be seen. That is way more difficult than a plan. But I do think that our government has co-opted the nation's best brains. You don't hear of them because they are faceless cogs in the government machinery but once a direction is set, I think they will have SOME success with implementation... even if not EVERY success.

There is hope again.

But of course, I speak for my own reactions to the announcement only... others may disagree.

Chenonceau
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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Chenonceau » Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:03 am

I do realize that these 2 enhancements do not directly address the difficulty of the PSLE, nor the stress our students face currently... which was the essence of the petition here... http://www.petitiononline.com/SgEd2011/petition.html. And I am sorry if I seem to have been disloyal to the aims of the petition many of you signed.

One of the 2 enhancements does indirectly address the issue of exam difficulty. It was not something that I/we had proposed but I think it is a better solution than anything I had thought of. By tweaking the school assessment system, the MOE will free up Teacher's time from the admin work related to chasing MOE awards. This extra time means that Teachers have more time to teach... and when they do have time to teach, our children will be able to master more of the curriculum without tuition/parental coaching.

The difficult syllabus now seems more manageable.

In addition, those teachers who are truly interested in teaching will not feel compelled to leave the system because they know they are not appreciated for teaching but for OD work (which they dislike). These are likely to stay and teach. And when personal interest pairs with more time resources, our children will be better looked after again.

As for the issues (stress and exam difficulty) raised in the petition, I think there is renewed hope because
(1) something has already been done to indirectly address it
(2) MOE is still dialoguing with some members of the online community to explore further suggestions
(3) MOE is open to exploring methods of social science research for use in data collection and analysis so as achieve more accurate perspectives on the more intangible aspects of education

It's a start. We can only be patient and work with our MOE.

Chenonceau
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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby SAHM_TAN » Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:36 am

I hope the civil servants who are assigned this task have normal kids who are in the primary school system or are going in next yr :wink:

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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby SAHM_TAN » Sat Sep 24, 2011 9:49 am

Chenonceau,

I do not think that u have been disloyal to the aims of the petition.

We do what we can.

Public policy will not please all.

I hope the educators will stay true to their profession.

We standby our kids.

SAHM_TAN
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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby sunset_dae » Sat Sep 24, 2011 10:12 am

Hope MOE can review the P1 registration system also!

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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Jennifer » Sat Sep 24, 2011 11:03 am

Every child is different. No one system will work for everyone. Hence, the Govt has been working towards providing diff avenues for diff segments.

We need to realise that there are more than one way. It is no use if the Govt puts in all efforts but we ignore the many other possibilities and then in the end, complain abt the obstacles of attaining academic success when in the 1st place, it is not meant for our child to undertake. Just my 2cts worth.

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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Chenonceau » Sat Sep 24, 2011 12:03 pm

Jennifer wrote:Every child is different. No one system will work for everyone. Hence, the Govt has been working towards providing diff avenues for diff segments.

We need to realise that there are more than one way. It is no use if the Govt puts in all efforts but we ignore the many other possibilities and then in the end, complain abt the obstacles of attaining academic success when in the 1st place, it is not meant for our child to undertake. Just my 2cts worth.


This is another way of saying that parents are kiasu because we want our kids to all be academically good. But I very much agree with you. Some people are not meant to take the academic path because their greater talents lie elsewhere.

However, this should not be a way for MOE to push away responsibility and be an excuse for the inadequate teaching (that arose because Teachers have been appreciated/rewarded/promoted for doing OD work... and teaching has become secondary). Such inadequate teaching takes place in many many schools across our nation... where Teachers test... but don't teach enough to meet test standards.

Students fail even when they DO have an aptitude for scholastic achievement. All I did was give my son 2 well chosen Math enrichment books, and his grades went from Fail to top. All I did was provide my son well-chosen material for Chinese Language and his compo grades went from 18/40 to 28/40 (under exam conditions) within 6 months. Clearly, my son has scholastic aptitude, but his school gave him neither the material nor the instruction required to cope with his exams.

That is currently what is happening. It is not the parents' fault. MOE must take responsibility for change. I am happy that it has chosen to free up Teacher's time from chasing awards that only PARTLY define what education is all about.

Chenonceau
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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Oppsgal » Sat Sep 24, 2011 1:07 pm

They should also do away with the volunteer work to get the students into primary school.

Does petitions work so far?

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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Oppsgal » Sat Sep 24, 2011 1:09 pm

Parents and students are equally stressed out.

Parents got to work to meet day to day expenses. Kids without anyone to teach also suffering. :sad:

If fail PSLE, then how?

The education system keep changing, wonder do I even know PSLE syllabus when my kid reach the PSLE age. Is very stressful if we have to depend tuition on every subjects. :scared:

Money stress to pay tuition fees + kid also stress.

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Re: Review Underway of the Educational System

Postby Snow Crystal » Sat Sep 24, 2011 2:38 pm

So revert to Teach More, Learn Less? :? Teach more so that parents do not have to pay so much for tuition :moneyflies: to bridge the gap and parents do not have to work so hard to afford the tuition fees. Learn Less becos the kids can't cramp so much :slapshead:, should get less homework and enjoy their childhood :please:

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