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January 8, 2013

Posted by @Karen_Fu in education, human quality, Singapore.
Tags: , ,

I don’t know how to react to this because from the grounds today, we have scholars who breech contracts, teachers and principals who do hideous things. So character in this perspective is doubtful. As for scholarship, there is a trend that poor kids do get disadvantaged. Not so much that they are marginalized by the education system on its own, but other factors like the ability to hire the best tutors and tuition to get ahead in class. It really makes you wonder how teaching is done in schools. But without seeing it myself, I can’t say it for sure. Then again, based on the way students coming home for more private learning, one has to doubt. It used to be that all students, rich or poor, are based on this merit system though the problem then was it wasn’t exactly a great environment to nurture the very talented and the gifted. Today, if you were to look at prestigious places of learning, there is a far higher proportion of kids from very well off families. Those who are scooted in cars, sometimes driven by their private chauffeurs. This is, in great contrast, a main difference of what it used to be – if you were studious and very smart, you relied only on what school resources gave you. Everyone had the same resources and teachers were very dedicated though the pay then was much lower than today. As long as you worked hard, and as long as you are typically bright, top schools are at your step regardless of social status. Even when you can only afford old china made canvas shoes with old socks that probably had a tiny hole or two.


MERITOCRACY in Singapore is about more than just academic grades, said Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong as he stressed that everyone here has a shot at success.

“When we say ‘merit’, we are not just talking about grades or scores, but also character, leadership and a broad range of talents,” said Lee said in a speech to more than 1,500 students and their parents at a bursary and Edusave award ceremony in his Teck Ghee ward.

He said: “We make sure that whatever your family background, whatever your circumstances, you may be poor, you may be from a single-parent family, you may be having some learning disabilities, but if you work hard, you can succeed.

“It does not matter what your background is. We make sure we identify you, we give you the opportunities and also the resources and the support so that if you succeed, you can do…

View original post 223 more words


1. rightways - January 8, 2013

“The country that tops the I.Q. charts isn’t America or in Europe. It’s Singapore, at 108. (The reason may have to do with Singapore’s Confucian respect for learning and its outstanding school system ”

Sources: It’s a Smart, Smart, Smart World

2. @Karen_Fu - January 9, 2013

True. But it has disadvantaged the poorer kids. If I let them train in top private schools on advanced knowledge and all, will my IQ points go a little higher? Chances are it will. IQ is not a definite measure of intelligence. If it were, life successes don’t come from the so-called less intelligent. It’s just another test paper.

3. rightways - January 9, 2013

You are absolutely right,

But, poor kids can succeed too if they got guts and determination against adversary like me: a poor kid started work very young; built own successes independently through hard work and honesty….

You are better than me.

4. @Karen_Fu - January 9, 2013

I doubt I am better than you. I struggle throughout my latter childhood years and up. In fact some of the things I suffer may be worse than some people.

5. rightways - January 9, 2013

You look brilliant, I am just ok la.

6. @Karen_Fu - January 9, 2013

Being honest and hardworking isn’t enough. You still need to be intelligent with a hint of luck. Industriousness without honesty will fail and for not following what sustainable society needs, we will perish. So yes, honesty and hardworking habbits yield most of the success. Intelligence and wisdom will help keep it. However certain kind of honesty can kill you if the person you are facing is a cunning one.

7. rightways - January 9, 2013

Well said, Karen

8. @Karen_Fu - January 9, 2013

I am not brilliant. If I was, today I would be commanding, not under command of certain situations…. Ah well

9. rightways - January 9, 2013

Karen, you work for others?

10. @Karen_Fu - January 9, 2013

Sort of. I think as lo as we are making money or getting a favour, we are under command…..

11. rightways - January 9, 2013

We are interdependent, right?

12. rightways - January 16, 2013

When we are young, we ‘depend’ on parents and teachers, learn and emulate them, grow, then become matured ‘interdependent’ among friends, colleagues, family and community of nations.

13. rightways - January 16, 2013

But it has disadvantaged the poorer kids – Karen Foo

Many rich kids become ‘spoiled child’, tended to remain dependent on good things provided to them. They may not be able to cope the cruel reality in the real world.

@Karen_Fu - January 16, 2013

True. But kids from modest backgrounds are already deprived of an upper hand knowledge and skills. Resources are not fairly allocated and perhaps also wasted as they are given to these better to do kids who may not be the exact right calibre to use these learnt skills. Very wealthy kids usually also groom a sense of ego that cannot be challenged. They always think they are the best and thus developed this kind of defence in them to play against anyone who are better or potentially better than them.

@Karen_Fu - January 16, 2013

True. But we must also bear in mind some people do not believe in interdependence with everyone.

14. rightways - January 17, 2013

The poor, underprivileged or disadvantaged kids and peoples deserve supports, like scholarship etc. provided they are equally good, not like those: once a beggar always a beggar, heard it?

Resources allocation, talent development, etc are matters of management know-how. Perhaps, Singapore Management University, (SMU) http://smu.edu.sg/ serves the purpose.

Character building is important, IQ alone is useless.

rightways - January 17, 2013

Typo correction: deserves to deserve pls

15. @Karen_Fu - January 17, 2013

Thanks for the note. I’ve corrected the typo.

SMU has come up in leaps and bounds within ten years since its setup. IQ is one area only. What would be crazy is to try testing someone everything via paper.

Heard something similar to your beggar quote. It basically means you are predestined to be someone, which is untrue.

16. rightways - January 17, 2013

“Once a beggar always a beggar” – refer to peoples who can’t learn new skills, don’t want to listen advices, not Daring to change their mindsets. Maybe they are lazy, arrogant …..

@Karen_Fu - January 17, 2013

You have the time to explain in detail.. I don’t. Am on my way to get something done. Begar or not, thats their business. We don’t have the right to judge. Hardworking or daring to change, only the great holy lord will know. No need to tell.

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