13 first-timers among new principals at 61 schools next year

Sixty-one schools will be getting a new principal next year as part of the Ministry of Education's (MOE) annual reshuffle exercise.

Of these schools, 13 will have principals who have been appointed for the first time. One of them is Northbrooks Secondary School, which will have Mr Chan Choon Loong as its new head. He is currently vice-principal of Bukit Panjang Government High School.

Principals for seven merged secondary schools starting next year were also named.

These include Mr Ling Khoon Chow, Bendemeer Secondary's principal, who will lead Beatty Secondary, and Fuhua Secondary principal Tan Siew Woon, who will head Northland Secondary.

MOE said yesterday that appointing and rotating principals allows schools to benefit from fresh perspectives and experienced principals to share their best practices.

Mr Chan, 38, said he is excited to lead a school. "I'll spend the next few months getting to know the school, and I hope to continue the good work done by it."

He said that he hopes to guide students in their post-secondary education choices, and help teachers improve their craft through professional development.

Several principals are retiring this year. The longest-serving among them is Mr Kwek Hiok Chuang, who has chalked up 38 years in the education service.

The 61-year-old spent 26 years as a principal across four schools - North View Secondary, Anderson Secondary, Pioneer Junior College and, the latest, Nanyang Junior College.

He said the best part of being in education was getting the chance to shape young minds.

"I counted the number of students I've met from my teaching days all the way until now - it's about 22,000."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 22, 2016, with the headline '13 first-timers among new principals at 61 schools next year'. Print Edition | Subscribe