Don't judge kids by their PSLE scores: Heng Swee Keat

Minister for Education, Heng Swee Keat, 50, at the 5th Singapore-Jiangsu Cooperation Council Meeting at Shangri-la Hotel Singapore, Island Ballroom. -- PHOTO: ZAOBAO
Minister for Education, Heng Swee Keat, 50, at the 5th Singapore-Jiangsu Cooperation Council Meeting at Shangri-la Hotel Singapore, Island Ballroom. -- PHOTO: ZAOBAO

It's not about the exam results, but the journey of learning, said Education Minister Heng Swee Keat in a Facebook post on Thursday afternoon, ahead of the release of the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) results on Friday.

"When the results are out, please do remember not to judge your own child, or others' children, by a number," he said in the post. "I believe strongly that the PSLE marks the end of just one stage of a long and hopefully rich education journey, and just one stage of an even longer and fuller lifetime of learning. It is not healthy for the children if we put undue pressure on them over one exam."

The Ministry of Education (MOE) announced on Tuesday that the highest and lowest PSLE aggregate scores will not be released this year so that pupils would focus on their own achievements holistically. These scores have been printed on result slips, along with the pupil's own aggregate score, since 1982.

The decision to not disclose the highest and lowest scores comes a year after MOE decided not to name the top scorers in each cohort. In August, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong also annouced that the PSLE aggregate scores will be replaced by wider grade bands, similar to those used in the O- and A-level examinations.