IN the latest worldwide Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) done in 2007, 58 countries and educational regions participated at grade (primary) 4 or at grade 8 (secondary 2) or both. TIMSS 2007 is the fourth global survey of mathematics and science prowess of students all over the world carried out since 1995 by the International Association for the Evaluation of Educational Achievement. The IEA is an international organization of research and government entities from various countries. So where does Singapore stand in this latest global survey?
THE Community Involvement Programme (CIP) and Service Learning prepares our students, the future leaders of our nation to become socially responsible and to develop their sense of belonging and commitment to our country. Through participating in community work, students also learn the value of service and develop lasting friendships with one another. MP for Marine Parade GRC Dr Fatimah Lateef said in a 2006 parliamentary speech that the CIP helps youth to gain a real world perspective and appreciation that would later be translated into productive ideas that add to nation building.
SENIOR Minister Goh Chok Tong made the call for a kinder, gentler Singapore in a 1991 speech. Over the years, the Ministry of Education (MOE) and schools have through community service clubs and ad hoc activities been steadily building this in our youth as part of a holistic education designed to develop students as socially responsible individuals with a strong sense of belonging and commitment to society. In 1997, the MOE launched the Community Involvement Programme (CIP) to entrench this in the school system. Since 2008, a student's level of participation in these programmes has been recognised in the School Graduation Certificate which includes a description of each student’s academic and non-academic achievements and personal qualities. So what does the CIP entail in schools?
BEIJING 2008 was an inspiring Olympics producing sensations on the track and in the pool. While Jamaican sprint king Usain Bolt blew off his opposition (and also in the following year 2009 at Berlin), and excited our imagination with his explosive power, American Michael Phelps ruled the waves with amazing grace! So what about your child who has already shown early talent in one sport or another? How to help him or her to achieve their sporting potential? The Singapore Sports School could well be your best answer to combine both academics and sports in an optimal fashion.
A TEST mark provides an indication of our child's performance. The higher, the better. That is fine when we consider a test within a single classroom context. But in reality, tests do not exist in isolation. They have to be analysed with a host of other factors, eg be compared with other tests in other classrooms, indeed all those in a school if it is a school examination, and among all schools if it is a national examination like the PSLE. Of course, it assumes an even broader context for an international examination like the GCE. So what does a test mark mean? How should we temper our expectations when our child brings home a test paper grade? In this story, teacher-educator and educational research consultant Dr Soh Kay Cheng (click here about his latest book), formerly at the Ministry of Education (MOE) and later at the National Institute of Education (NIE) discusses what test scores mean and how you should interpret them in the context of your child's education.
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