In a speech to over two hundred Ministry of Education (MOE) Edusave awardees and their families on Saturday, January 5, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said that students need more than just good education and training, but “intangible but essential values” are also necessary for the nation to achieve success.
As reported by the Straits Times, the Prime Minister also asked the parents in the audience to support the recent developments in the country’s educational system, saying that not only are students being trained to support themselves, but they are also receiving training in that will shape their values and character.
This well-roundedness, he claims, is what will contribute to the success of the nation.
The Prime Minister emphasized the students’ need for a greater understanding of the world, as well as to sense a feeling for nationhood and community. PM Lee also said that students should have the “resilience and determination to overcome adversity, defend ourselves, prosper and thrive in the world”.
This, he said, is dependent “not just on what knowledge you have picked up in school – language, science and mathematics, economics and history – but also the intangible but essential values – caring for your classmates and fellow citizens, being willing to contribute to the common good, taking pride in our country, and standing up for it.”
Over 1,100 students from Teck Ghee will be awarded with Teck Ghee Citizens Consultative Committee (CCC) Bursary Awards and MOE Edusave Awards this weekend.
Students from lower-income families are given Bursary Awards and $100 to $500 MOE Edusave Awards are given to those who show excellent performance in both academic and extra-curricular activities.
The Prime Minister, who is at the same time an MP for Ang Mo Kio GRC, reiterated that the new developments in Singapore’s educational system are designed to bring more relevance to students. A de-emphasis on merely academic results, giving more focus on deeper learning and assisting learners with connecting content in textbooks and real-life situations are part of these innovations.
PM Lee said, “We want to inculcate in young Singaporeans the passion to ‘Learn for Life’ so that they are prepared for the future economy.” He also said that students must “take advantage of the opportunities to learn as much as you can, both in knowledge and also values from your teachers and friends”.