MOE kindergartens to debut in 2014!
The long-awaited MOE Kindergartens are due to open in January 2014. Parents, find out where they will be located, how to register your kids and what you can expect from this initiative.
The Ministry of Education recently announced that it will open its first batch of kindergartens in January 2014. The kindergartens, five in all, will offer 560 places, with one third reserved for Singaporean children from lower-income families.
According to Education Minister Heng Swee Keat, “The aim is to help (these children) level up and also to include a more inclusive profile in our kindergartens.”
Yet, according to Minister of State for Education Indranee Rajah, the MOE kindergarten is cautious to avoid the impression that the kindergartens are branded for a “particular income group”. It wants to be seen as all-inclusive and promoting social-mixing–something Rajah says has turned up from parents feedback.
True to its promise to serve the heartlands, the five pilot kindergartens are located in HDB estates around Singapore. The designated locations are Tampines, Telok Blangah, Bukit Batok, Punggol and Farrer Park. All the kindergartens will be housed in primary schools except for the one in Tampines, which will be located at the void deck. Each of the kindergartens will be taking in 80-120 pupils for the January 2014 batch.
Monthly fees are currently set at $150 for Singapore citizens and $300 for permanent residents. Furthermore, to even the playing field, financial assistance will be available to families of Singaporean children with a gross household income not exceeding $3,500, or a per capita gross household income not exceeding $875.
There will be two four-hour sessions available; one in the morning and the other in afternoon. Morning sessions are from 8 – 12 pm while afternoon sessions are from 1 – 5 pm. The three official Mother Tongue Languages (MTLs), namely Chinese, Malay and Tamil will also be offered at these kindergartens.
Registration for Kindergarten One classes starts this April and roadshows will be held at the various schools during the first week of April. You can start registering your child from April 8, 2013 onward at the respective schools as well. Click here for details on the roadshows at the various venues as well as the documents parents will need to bring along.
Based on the potential in popularity these kindergartens can see, MOE has urged parents not to rush, or queue for registration, as admission is not on a first-come-first-served basis and will depend more on the registrants’ location from the school. In this case, it is similar to how the phases in Primary One registration works.
Since the roadshows begun earlier this week, parents have been flocking to them with more than 200 parents reportedly at the Punggol View Primary One earlier this week.
Readers theAsianparent.com has spoken to, welcome the MOE kindergartens, with many feeling that these facilities are long overdue.
Aisha Ali, 32, mother of a three-year-old girl says, “It’s good that the kindergartens will be housed in a primary school as it allows my daughter to acclimatise herself to a primary school setting before she even sets foot in Primary One.”
Hana Lim, 26, mother of a one-year-old boy says, “Putting my son in a MOE kindergarten would be my first choice, especially since the curriculum would probably prepare him best for entering Primary One.”
Mira Soh, 43, mother of three teens and a three-year-old girl says, “The only thing I’m worried about is the four-hour programme of the kindergarten classes. It might not be ideal for working parents like myself especially if there is no option for after school care.”