Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Every School is a Good School
I welcome the removal of school banding. Schools can and will still be informally banded, e.g., you can go to kiasuparents.com and the time tested word of mouth to find out about the good schools; good in the sense that these schools are likely to help your child to achieve a good L1R5 for JCs.
So what is the good of stopping school banding? The benefit is that school behave according to how they are measured. By scrapping the numerous awards, schools are now freer to exercise their judgement and initiative to do the best for their charges. Previously we were all serving KPIs. Nothing wrong with KPIs except that over time exceeding KPIs become the be all and end all of running schools. Managing a school this way is as egregious as kids studying to the test today. We end up self deceived thinking that we are far better than we truly are.
Min Heng is doing the the right thing to cease school banding. Until schools game or abuse the system, then it would be time to make major changes once more. We see this happening to subject syllabuses too especially for languages. They are rightly making it harder to game the tests. Parents would be unhappy but that is the right thing for our kids.
Update: Sep 13
Folks would still use t-scores cut off to select their secondary school. This is very public info. E.g, even at a tuition centre website (http://www.acetutors.com.sg/Secondary-School-Ranking-2012-Based-On-PSLE-Intake)