The Straits Times
Published on Nov 22, 2012

Motivation to excel will plunge


WILL the Education Ministry's blackout on the top performers in national examinations really achieve the Government's aim of de-emphasising academic results ("MOE stops naming top students"; yesterday)?

It would be interesting and inspirational if we name the top scorers, especially those who have overcome big challenges.

We are swinging from one end of the pendulum to the other in reacting to perceptions about the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE).

Every year, thousands of Singaporeans look forward to the PSLE results for sheer excitement and motivation.

Every year, thousands of hard-working and determined youngsters aim to do well in the exam.

But now we will not know who are the top scorers. The motivation to excel will plunge.

We should target the parents, and not the children, who must be encouraged to perform as best as they can and be rewarded for it.

We should not be giving in to some parents who articulate their concerns over the exam unnecessarily.

We must accept that some pupils are more academically inclined or hard-working than others.

It is wrong to feel stressed over naming the top achievers if our children are not among them.

We should applaud the top scorers and accept the fact that most other children will still go on learning and developing even if they do not shine in the PSLE.

Vincent Chua