This has led to a considerable sense of achievement in Finland and East Asia and endless hand-wringing and head-scratching in the West.
Background[ edit ] Singapore is a racially and linguistically diverse city-state, with four official languages: EnglishMandarin ChineseMalay and Tamil. After World War II, schools were gradually brought under government control and the government recognised that a lingua franca was needed to facilitate communication among the different racial and dialect groups.
Malay was briefly considered for this role, in anticipation of the merger with Malaysia. However, English was eventually selected as the common language. Due to the status of English as a world language and the desire for Singaporeans to retain their cultures, the government encourages Singaporeans to be fluent in both English and their mother tongue.
However, schools teaching English as a second language saw a rapid decline in enrolment and many closed down or switched to teaching English as the first language. This resulted in the mother tongue being taught only as an academic subject.
Thus all other lessons and activities conducted beyond the classroom are conducted in English, with the exception of moral education and mother tongue; this is unlike the typical bilingual education models where academic content is taught in two languages.
However, Special Assistance Plan SAP schools, where some activities are conducted in Mandarin, private schools such as madrasahsinternational schools and special education schools are exceptions to the system.
In tertiary institutions, such as universities, polytechnics and the Institute of Technical Education ITElanguages are no longer academic subjects almost all content is taught in English, with the exception of some courses on Chinese Studies.
Written examinations include composition writing and comprehension passages, while in oral examinations, students are asked to verbally read passages and describe pictures. The primary school syllabus aims to develop speaking and listening skills, as well as to nurture students into independent readers who can express their ideas in writing.
In secondary school, students are expected to speak and write in grammatically correct English tailored to purpose, audience and context. Junior college students are assumed to be fluent in English.
Hence, at this level English as an academic subject is replaced by General Paperwhere students formulate analysis and arguments about current issues. A syllabus review in removed many enrichment activities to enable more students to develop functional literacy in English.
Ten years later, another syllabus review replaced grammar teaching with compulsory fiction reading. However, the increasing prevalence of Singlish sparked concerns about declining English standards, leading to a renewed focus on "systematic and explicit instruction of grammar" in subsequent syllabus reviews.
Policymakers assumed a correlation between intelligence and language learning,  to the extent that the only difference between EM1 and EM2 was that the former offered Higher Mother Tongue likewise for Special and Express.
Inthe Ministry of Education started replacing the streaming system first merging EM1 and EM2 with the current system of ability banding for each subject. In the latter case, a student can opt to study an unofficial language such as French, German or Japanese as their mother tongue. Such situations are assessed on a case-by-case basis.
Mandarin was first introduced to Singapore during British colonisation through Chinese schools in the s, since then, it has gained popularity. After Singapore gained independence, the government has maintained continuous efforts to promote the language so as to ensure that Chinese Singaporeans know about their ethnic roots, culture and maintain traditional Asian values.
Further efforts to encourage the use of Chinese include Chinese-medium SAP schools, which teach both English and Chinese as first-language standard. Chinese Education Changes[ edit ] The following table summarises the changes made with regard to the Chinese Language syllabus.(Ministry of Education, ) The reason for this desired outcome of education is Singapore having no natural resources except for her population.
Therefore, Singapore, having to rely on her people for economic growth and development, has no margin for mistakes and emphasizes on the need for her people to contribute.
National Education (NE) is part of a holistic education.
It aims to develop national cohesion, cultivate the instinct for survival as a nation and boost students’ confidence in our nation's future.
It also emphasises on cultivating a sense of belonging and emotional rootedness to Singapore. The Development of Education in Singapore since Background paper prepared for the Asia Education Study Tour for African Policy Makers, June 18 – 30, By Associate Professor Goh Chor Boon and Professor S.
Gopinathan National Institute of . Stages of education.
The DOE are translated into a set of developmental outcomes for each key stage of our education system. The Key Stage Outcomes spell out what the Education Service aspires to develop in our students through Primary, Secondary, and Post-Secondary2 education.
Teaching is coherent, fit-for-purpose and pragmatic, drawing on a range of pedagogical traditions, both Eastern and Western. The logic of teaching in Singapore.
Singapore’s education system. Stages of education. The DOE are translated into a set of developmental outcomes for each key stage of our education system. The Key Stage Outcomes spell out what the Education Service aspires to develop in our students through Primary, Secondary, and Post-Secondary2 education.