Is a private-school education a poor investment? How can the quality of private education be improved?
Quality is one thing; perception of it is another. When I was in JC, the prevailing belief was that if you couldn't get into NUS/NTU, and had to go overseas, it said something about you.
From personal experience, yes, it's a poor investment. But it doesn't mean that one learnt nothing from it.
In Singapore, education is just a tool for money. If the returns for investment is poor, then enrolment will fall and the schools will close down.
It depends on what you term as "poor".
Private education can offer insights to different contexts and real-life examples, especially when the lecturers come from the main school overseas. It can also allow for more flexibility in thinking, that is, application versus theory-based answers, and more open discussions.
If a hiring manager only sees mainstream education students as good candidates and disregards private ones, then they are probably making a poor investment and poor judgment.
Should environmentally friendly products be labelled? Would this encourage consumers to make environmentally conscious choices when they shop?
Label those not environmentally friendly.
The buying habits of consumers have nothing to do with products having environmentally friendly labels or not. Nobody seeks out these labels and allows them to be the only consideration for buying the product.
Wilkie Ong Keng Soon
Have you noticed there is suddenly a whole slew of environmentally friendly products? Instead of focusing on the consumers, the focus should be on the stores, supermarkets and suppliers. Who controls what the consumers buy? Who benefits from the marketing?
Should companies be prevented from asking job applicants for details like their identity card numbers, age and address before an offer for a job is made?
For identifying an applicant, the identity card number is necessary, but applicants should give only the last four numbers and the letter. To prevent underage applicants, age is compulsory. For communication, either address or phone number is necessary.
For professional, manager, executive, accounting or office jobs, there is no need to ask for age in resumes or when shortlisting for interview, for reasons such as age discrimination. From my experience, most interviewers' ageist attitude towards older candidates changed after having spoken and seen the latter in person.
For jobs that are strenuous, asking for age helps to gauge physical suitability.
Priscilla Poh Beng Hoon
Job applicants should have the option to give or not, but if you think they may have vacancy in future and might call you up again, then you will have to give.
Lai Cheong Fatt
Unfortunately, this is an open market. If you don't give and other applicants do, you lose out.