Eh people ,
Getting out of point here le ...wa Lau . What girl with PSLE marry guy with degree feel secure ; that's sexist leh.
My 2 cents is that all the stakeholders have a part to play.
(1) schools were allowed to differentiate & specialize. Independent (RI, ACS(I), SST etc) , Autonomous, SAP , mainstream etc leading to very diverse programs and of course the idea of Good vs Normal vs Bad schools. It wasn't something MOE wanted and expected but its a fact now. Yes , I preach 'all schools are good' but ask any teacher whether they believe so.
(2) parents jumping into the game of education. The current generation of parents are the 'enjoying the fruits' generation; few are grateful to just have an education. My dad was grateful he was allowed to study, are our kids grateful?
Everyone wants and feels their child deserves the best because suddenly since the 1980s onwards , everyone's child is special.
And these parents having gone thru the system knowing the differences between diff 'leagues' of schools of course will try their best to shove their kids into the so called better schools leading to increased competition.
When I did my PSLE, 240 was considered damn good. Nowadays 240 can't get u anywhere near any independent school at all.
(3) society wise , face it ; paper still counts. People have made it w/o qualifications but how many are them? 100 out of 5 million ? Not cynical but changes to what defines success takes time. For now , we simply so what we feel is right.
Sadly to say , being part of the educational system and guilty in policy planning etc ; the tuition culture and craze prob won't abate until the day assessment practices change.
The way students are assessed have to change first before any meaningful or substantial can start.
Remove O levels and PSLE , no ranking Liao; who still wants to compete ? But then, anyone has suggestions what then do we use ?
I personally feel tuition helps. It is better time spent there than watching TV, playing with PC and chatting on the phone with puppy love gf. There are too many distractions nowadays. Better to put the kid where they can do some studying.
Last edited by ManWearPants; 18th September 2013 at 05:26 PM.
Avoided tuition for as long as I could when I was a kid
Hated school enough the first time, going again after it ended was simply tortuous
Struck a deal with my folks, if I keep up the grades, I won't need tuition
Spent all my afternoons on usenet and BBS boards
Turns out tuition was an amazing place to expand your irl social network
Especially if you were in an all-boys school... LOL
I must admit that looking at the current syllabus, I'd be surprised if I didn't need the extra help
Endure. In enduring grow strong.
Maybe because it's still Kindy, so no stress yet, and still think tuition is fun n play. Just wait till the studying stress kicks in.
A true photograph need not be explained, nor can it be contained in words.
This is my own story.
Mathematics was always my poison since Sec 1. I just don't get it. I'm not afraid to admit that I have no passed a single Maths paper from Sec 1 all the way to Sec 4, with the exception of 'O' levels. I had aspired to be an architect from a young age and not having at least a pass in maths essentially closed all doors to an architectural education. I die die must pass 'O' levels maths. It was a necessary evil.
Mum got me a tutor because she knew that teachers in school, no matter how hard they try, will not have enough time to pull me out of the ditch. She knew that well being a teacher herself. So came this young engineer who just completed her studies in Chicago. She was an inspiration. Not only did she tutored me but she was knocking sense into me. She made me understand how formulas came about. She made me understand maths. Not just drilling on 10-year series. She also told me it wouldn't be the end of the world if I couldn't get into Archi school. She had wanted to do a degree in music but found that it wasn't for her so she switched to engineering. lesson to take hiome is that you can plan whaver you like but reality will take its course regardless. That said, she did not give up and wanted me to give maths a go.
3 months before the 'O's, she was seeing me 3 times a week. I still screwed my prelims. But whatdayaknow! I scored an A2 in 'O' levels! That was probably my greatest achievement as a 16 year old. She was the first person I called. I remember Ms Lim till this day.
Having a tutor can help to an extent but for godsake, don't start getting your kids tutors just becuase the kids next door are doing it.
Instead of issuing moronic blanket statements which does absolutely nothing, I wish they could really rework the education frame work. On hindsight, I had a close call. Its almost ridiculous to think that my future and aspiration hinging on a bloody 2 hour maths paper.
Let me share my thoughts as an ex MOE teacher, a current private tutor and part time poly lecturer.
Before I became a private tutor I was quite skeptical of private tuition because I believed that school is still the best place to learn, trained teachers who knows how to ace in examination best, discipline and other values being taught and trained in this very compound. That's what I told my students' parents in the past.
However after I resigned (due to further studies), I needed to have some form of income still while having flexible hour job so I tried out private tuition, and I admit initially is due to money but after I teach I do see a different view of tuition. I think no matter how much I want to help my school kids in the past, I find myself lack of the resources to do so because there are simply alot of non - teaching duties and job I have to do. In fact I spend less time thinking of teaching a subject than doing other stuff (organise events, etc) and I have more than 100 students to monitor. There are students who learn slower than the rest and they need the special 1-1 attention to catch up. Being in the bottom few JCs in SG there are alot of such students and I only have limited hours each week to meet them outside classroom. So I am unable to help them down at personal level in terms of coaching. And I am practical in a sense I won't want to work till 9pm everyday "for free".
For private tuition, I find myself really thinking hard on how to assist a child in his learning, partly because now I am paid specially for that and these kids really want tuition on their own and not because parents insist. They are appreciative and really pay attention to the teaching, and these kids are the ones who face difficulty to pass or even get a C. So I feel tuition has its own benefits to a specific group of kids.
So private tuition is not all that bad, I agree people find it unfair because some parents can afford more than others. But along this line it is also unfair that some schools in sg have more resources than others, in terms of quality of teachers, the quantity and also school funds. End of the day it is really up to the kids and the parents to think of what they can do best. If a child has no money for tutor then he or she has to be more proactive in approaching school teachers (be it teachers who are not teaching his class) for extra help.
On the other hand I am also pretty disgusted by tuition centres who only accept students who already score B or A as this will help in their marketing "our centre has XX % of A students". Weak students are rejected because the centre knows pushing to A is quite difficult and may ruin their image. For me is the opposite, usually I don't accept students from top schools unless they are really struggling. I prefer to take in students who are sincere in requesting the extra help on their own and who really need this extra help.
Of course private tuition is expensive, especially if one hires a current or ex sch teacher. I try to request a rate that is lower but still I am also guilty of not accepting jobs that offers too low a rate, such as $25 / hr for JC level on 1 to 1 basis.
Don't blame the parents, for we all want our kids to do well and provide the best we can. However we should not listen to our own needs instead of our children's too.