MOE To Continue To Focus On Education as a Social Leveller Amid COVID-19 Pandemic: Lawrence Wong
"Each one has different gifts, talents, interests, aptitude, so we want to be able to engage them so that they can find out what their strengths are, and achieve their fullest potential," Mr Wong said.
When it comes to school-going children, one of the pressing concerns that many parents have had since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, is how this will affect their child’s learning and education.
With COVID-19 said to continue on for at least one more year—or until a viable and readily available vaccine is developed—many parents are probably wondering: what does that mean for school-going kids?
MOE to Focus on Education as a Social Leveller
Speaking to reporters at Marsiling Secondary School in a media doorstop on Friday (14 Aug), Education Minister Lawrence Wong said that the Ministry of Education (MOE) will continue to focus on education as a social leveller.
“One priority for my team and I is to ensure that education remains an effective social leveller. And the resources that we provide to our schools should reflect this important ethos,” he said.
While paving the way to help bring about a more equal and socially mobile society, especially amid these tough times, Mr Wong also highlighted that there is a need to "stay vigilant" and "ensure that learning is not compromised".
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, there are other raised issues that the Education Ministry needs to consider, such as:
- How to allow students to resume activities outside their classrooms
- How exams will be conducted if the pandemic continues
- How to respond if there are unexpected waves of infections
MOE will continue to work to ensure that schools can continue to operate even if the COVID-19 rages on, said Mr Wong.
"We are applying our minds to see what adjustments are needed," he added.
Thus far, Singapore schools have seen safe management measures put in place, including the disinfection of common areas and classrooms among others, enforcing safe-distancing between students, and avoiding activities that would involve the intermingling of students across classes or schools—one of parents' top most concerns.
Schools have also marked out designated routes for students and staff to minimise the possible transmission of the virus, as well as carrying out temperature checks upon arrival in school.
Ensuring That Learning is Not Compromised
Mr Wong also highlighted that extra-curricular activities are an important part of students' learning experience beyond academics and grades.
In his third school visit in his new post as Education Minister at Marsiling Secondary School, Mr Wong interacted with students in some classes, toured the school grounds, and even visited the school's vertical vegetable garden.
Utilising the school's vertical vegetable garden as part of an applied learning programme, students get to learn about environmental issues such as food sustainability.
"Our overarching priority for education remains the same and that is to bring out the best in every student. We recognise that all the children are different," said Mr Wong.
He added: "Each one has different gifts, talents, interests, aptitude, so we want to be able to engage them so that they can find out what their strengths are, and achieve their fullest potential."
Image source: File photo