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Singapore's education policies are largely influenced by the need to compete in a global economy. Do you agree? Explain your answer.

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Raffles Institution Social Studies Assignment : Education - Lionel Ong (19) 4Q a) Singapore's education policies are largely influenced by the need to compete in a global economy. Do you agree? Explain your answer. [12m] I agree to a large extent. Ever since Singapore gained independence in 1965, Singapore's education policies has played a crucial role in the economic progress and social changes of the country, and more importantly, the raising of Singapore's standing on the global stage, in terms of both economic might and international recognition. During the early years of independence, Singapore's main priority was to deviate away from entrepot trade into manufacturing and industrialisation so as to improve the economy, and at the same time solve the problem of unemployment. As a result of this move towards industrialisation, the Singapore government had to prepare students for entry into the workforce by equipping them with the necessary skills. As such, technical education was introduced for the first time in secondary schools in 1969, where all boys and 50% of the girls had to take technical subjects such as woodwork and metalwork. ...read more.


As a result, pupils had a greater awareness of their own cultural roots. English was also important - it functioned as a link between the different races as it was a common language which everyone understood. This improved communication amongst the various races, helped to break down racial barriers and build a more harmonious society. In 1997, National Education (NE) was formally introduced in all aspects of school life, ranging from discussion during lessons to celebration of events such as Racial Harmony Day and Total Defence Day. NE fosters strong bonds among pupils of different races as they each get to learn about and appreciate the diverse and rich cultures of each race. It also teaches them responsibility and commitment to family, community and country. In conclusion, I agree, to a large extent, with the statement that Singapore's education policies are largely influenced by the need to compete in a global economy. It is the overriding and most important factor taken into consideration in the making of our education policies. To be able to compete on the global stage, in a global economy, alongside much bigger and more powerful countries such as the United States of America and Japan, to be able to stand ...read more.


At the end of their vocational training, or apprenticeship, pupils obtain a certificate of competence in his/her particular trade. These certificates are highly valued in Switzerland, and with the large number of pupils possessing such certificates, the Swiss can be confident that their reputation and achievements in the various fields such as banking, engineering, food and nutrition, hospitality management, pharmaceuticals, technology and quality craftsmanship will be upheld. The Swiss identity of quality and excellence in the service sector is thus created and enhanced. In conclusion, I agree to a large extent that the multi-lingual policy in Swiss schools helps to create the Swiss identity. The multi-lingual policy enables Swiss pupils to effectively communicate with each other, no matter which canton or region they come from, by breaking down the language barrier. The knowledge of an ethnic language also enhances the desired effect of social education, causing the pupil to even better understand and appreciate the culture of another ethnic language. Social responsibility is also critical in the creation of the Swiss identity, but the creation of a harmonious society in Switzerland as a result of multi-lingualism and a better understanding of the different diverse cultures is the most important. For harmony equals unity, and only with unity can there be the Swiss identity. ...read more.

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