From the Principal’s Desk – 08 November, 2018
“Learning is NOT a competition”
In a recent article published by the World Economic Forum entitled “Children in Singapore will no longer be ranked by exam results. Here’s why“, the age old question about examinations and the competitive nature of education was once again raised. It seems that a country synonymous with an excellent education system backed up by pretty impressive examination results year in and year out is reconsidering its approach to education. “Discussions, homework and quizzes are set to replace marks and grades as the preferred method of collecting information on the performance of young primary school pupils. Starting in 2019, exams for primary years 1 and 2 students will be abolished. Older primary and secondary students will also study in a less competitive environment. Marks for each subject will be rounded off to the nearest whole number — without decimal places — to lower the emphasis on academic success. “Learning is not a competition,” states Ong Ye Kung, Singapore’s Education Minister. ”The Ministry of Education (MOE) is planning a series of changes aimed at discouraging comparisons between student performance and encouraging individuals to concentrate on their own learning development.”
It is pretty impressive that a country like Singapore with an excellent track record in education is still able to reflect on how to “do it better” with regards to their education system. It is also reassuring that they impress upon the importance “soft skills” students require before entering the workforce. The following required skills are growing at a rapid rate; critical thinking and analysis, creativity and originality, leadership and social influence, complex problem solving, active learning and strategies to name but a few.
This interesting article not only provides much food for thought and will certainly challenge many of our (those of us not currently in school) outdated views of what is important in the world of education but reinforces that HBIS is on the right track with regards to the International Baccalaureate (IB) style of education. The various skills and approaches to teaching and learning on exactly what is needed for a 21st Century Education.
Check out the full article here.