Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

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Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby SpartanMum » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:02 am

Ok, so Singapore is a small country with an efficient transport system and nowhere is really that far. However, one has to admit that Singapore is also one of the most competitive in the academic field. So the time saved in travelling can make a significant difference to how much rest your DC can get (or as some may look at it - how much extra time DC can spend on studies).
What are your thoughts? Would you send your DC to a school 1 hour away from home just because it is the best/better/DC only wants that school.
If no/yes, why? :smile:

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby slmkhoo » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:16 am

I think my limit would be 1 hr door-to-door. My daughter is in a school not too far away and it takes her about 40-45mins door-to-door (MRT/bus; it would be only 10-15mins by car). It was our first choice, so that was great for her. We were agonising over other choices, balancing between distance and 'quality', but if there were no major differences between schools, we generally favoured distance. Another thought - my daughter as commented that it might be better for the travel time to be really long so she can sleep on the bus/train! As it is now, each leg of her journey is too short for her to nap.

It's not so much the competitiveness of Singapore education, but the ridiculously long hours that schools operate these days that is the issue. If schools could manage 2 sessions on a single day in the past, why can't they manage with the same no. of hours when they go single-session? I don't think the kids benefit much more with the extra time taken. And we used to spend about 3-4 hrs a week on CCA (other than sports CCA), but now most CCAs require about 6 hrs a week. The only good thing is that many kids don't need to go to school on Saturdays, so I suppose there is some trade-off.

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby BlueBells » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:23 am

Yes I would. As long as it is a school that my child desires, and his grades allow him entry, I would support him.

That having said, I would also ensure that he is aware of the time and challenges he would faced (long travelling time, need to wake up earlier, etc.). So long as he is sure he can manage all these, I am fine.

At 12 going 13, I believe in involving them in decisions that will impact them.

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby SpartanMum » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:29 am

slmkhoo wrote:It's not so much the competitiveness of Singapore education, but the ridiculously long hours that schools operate these days that is the issue. If schools could manage 2 sessions on a single day in the past, why can't they manage with the same no. of hours when they go single-session? I don't think the kids benefit much more with the extra time taken. And we used to spend about 3-4 hrs a week on CCA (other than sports CCA), but now most CCAs require about 6 hrs a week. The only good thing is that many kids don't need to go to school on Saturdays, so I suppose there is some trade-off.


Yeah...very long hours ...even in primary school :sad:

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby slmkhoo » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:35 am

SpartanMum wrote:
slmkhoo wrote:It's not so much the competitiveness of Singapore education, but the ridiculously long hours that schools operate these days that is the issue. If schools could manage 2 sessions on a single day in the past, why can't they manage with the same no. of hours when they go single-session? I don't think the kids benefit much more with the extra time taken. And we used to spend about 3-4 hrs a week on CCA (other than sports CCA), but now most CCAs require about 6 hrs a week. The only good thing is that many kids don't need to go to school on Saturdays, so I suppose there is some trade-off.


Yeah...very long hours ...even in primary school :sad:

I was referring to sec school where kids are older and more able to cope. Don't even get me started on primary schools! I really think that Singapore should have outgrown the 'more is better' mindset decades ago.

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby Song22 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:50 am

I also think that 1 hour door to door is okay.
Not sure if it is feasible at all, but it will be great if school starts later? Perhaps, 9:30am or 10am for those single session school :oops:

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby slmkhoo » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:21 am

Song22 wrote:I also think that 1 hour door to door is okay.
Not sure if it is feasible at all, but it will be great if school starts later? Perhaps, 9:30am or 10am for those single session school :oops:

That will only work if the school day and CCA time can be shortened. Currently, my daughter starts at 7.20am and ends around 2pm most days, then stays on for CCA or other stuff about 3 days a week until 5-6pm. That's already considered very light! I have heard from friends with kids in other schools that lessons end nearer 3pm. Some kids don't get home till after dark several times a week. I prefer an early start and early end - I don't know about your kids, but if school starts later, my daughter will just wake later!

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby cherrygal » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:29 am

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Last edited by cherrygal on Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:36 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby Song22 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:34 am

slmkhoo wrote:
Song22 wrote:I also think that 1 hour door to door is okay.
Not sure if it is feasible at all, but it will be great if school starts later? Perhaps, 9:30am or 10am for those single session school :oops:

That will only work if the school day and CCA time can be shortened. Currently, my daughter starts at 7.20am and ends around 2pm most days, then stays on for CCA or other stuff about 3 days a week until 5-6pm. That's already considered very light! I have heard from friends with kids in other schools that lessons end nearer 3pm. Some kids don't get home till after dark several times a week. I prefer an early start and early end - I don't know about your kids, but if school starts later, my daughter will just wake later!


Ha ha, this is true :smile:

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Re: Choosing a school far from home - your thoughts

Postby sparks » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:51 am

For me, 1 hour is too long. It's actually 1 hour x 2 - to & from. To waste 2 hours or more (during peak hour traffic) is too much for me IMO.

Hence, I will only choose those that are within half hour of total travel time, near MRTs ( more reliable than buses)& not within 10 min walking distance. I don't know about you but I stay near Bishan MRT so I am able to easily find reasonably good schools within my requirement. I guess it is a very individual choice as it weighs heavily upon where you stay.

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