Moderation is key

The continued emphasis on tuition has, without doubt, turned it into a growth industry ("Fear factor fuels tuition industry"; last Saturday).

Singapore's huge tuition industry actually grew more out of default than by design.

But the mere fact that tuition centres are sprouting up is an affirmation of what can be called the "cultural DNA" of Asian parents, where education is viewed as a time-honoured family value that has to be secured by every possible means.

Furthermore, because of Singaporeans' "kiasu" attitude, many parents want their children to do well in school.

Nothing is wrong with wanting to see children score in school and get top grades.

The mere fact that tuition centres are sprouting up is an affirmation of what can be called the "cultural DNA" of Asian parents, where education is viewed as a time-honoured family value that has to be secured by every possible means.

But, as economist Euston Quah noted: "Excessive studying could be counterproductive in the same way that doing too much of any one activity, including leisure and recreation, often brings about a decline in the enjoyment of those activities."

Regrettably, that understanding is lost among many parents.

Denese Ong Wen Xuan (Miss)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 08, 2015, with the headline 'Moderation is key'. Print Edition | Subscribe