How does bringing up children in isolation equip them for future?

It is the right of parents to raise their child in any way they want, they should do so only as long as that child has no consequence on the future of others.
It is the right of parents to raise their child in any way they want, they should do so only as long as that child has no consequence on the future of others.PHOTO: ST FILE

In a recent article, a parent said she would prefer it if her children did not mix with those in the Normal stream due to "their upbringing", and that their "values may not be in tandem with what I agree with" (End of streaming: How will changes affect IP schools?, March 10).

While I acknowledge that it is the right of parents to raise their child in any way they want, they should do so only as long as that child has no consequence on the future of others.

If this parent intends for her child to be a future leader, then I would like to ask her: To what extent does bringing a child up in isolation in an ivory tower equip the child to be a future leader? And isn't the genesis for such criticism the exact mindset and prejudice held by this parent?

If we want our children to be future leaders, do they not need to prove that they can understand, empathise with and lead everyone?

Isn't the measure of a true leader one who cares for and is able to unite and inspire his fellowmen to better things rather than one who divides society into classes of people?

To put it more succinctly: Should space and funds in the Integrated Programme be wasted on scholarships for students who have been programmed to associate only with people whose values are in tandem with their own?

Boon Chin Aun

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 15, 2019, with the headline 'How does bringing up children in isolation equip them for future?'. Print Edition | Subscribe