Should maids who have lived in Singapore for many years be allowed to stay here permanently?
Any maid that has stayed here with the same employer for more than 10 years, should be granted PR. Her loyalty and devotion to her employer must be rewarded.
Matthew Chua Boon Hou
Yes, it should be an option and reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Our helper has been with us for nearly 30 years and is like family. She helps us so that our family can still continue working and contribute to the workforce, and she is always there when we need help.
Why can't this be an option for such wonderful helpers? They are in a dilemma too, whether or not to go back, because they have spent such a long time here that they are afraid they will not fit in when they go back. We should recognise their contributions to our country as well.
They should go back. No matter how long they have stayed here, their families are not here and their roots are not here. Just put yourself in their position.
It cannot be a rule. It should be assessed on a case-by-case basis.
For example, if a maid has equipped herself with skills for other trades like in the food and beverage sector or teaching of English, the case may be considered favourably.
The more responsible way is to give them a viable skill and teach them financial management so that they can go back home with a sustainable income. If they want to come back as a PR, it should be by their merits, with their working time here given some weightage.
Should neighbourhood schools be allowed to continue even if enrolment falls? Will this help in the development of a "brand"?
I agree that time is needed to cultivate a school's sense of identity.
Accumulation of alumni and shared common experiences will go a long way in nurturing a school's heritage and legacy, attracting a greater proportion of students and thus preventing its closure.
However, whatever time builds up, it can also tear down. Simply incentivising and relocating citizens will not alleviate the problems faced by run-of-the-mill neighbourhood schools.
The crux of the problem is quality over quantity.
Regardless of how many students a school takes in, if the said school cannot add any value to a student's life, then such a school is not going to survive for long.
Aidan Ong Zong Ren
If a school has falling enrolment, it makes sense for it to merge with another, but in the same neighbourhood.
The merged school can then build its own brand. The name of the merged schools should capture the name of the schools that have been merged so that the old boys and girls will not feel alienated.
Neighbourhood schools with a long history, strong academic results and co-curricular activities should be kept as dropping enrolment figures is a national phenomenon and not indicative of the school's value. It is time we look at the education landscape with a new lens. Some schools may need to go as they are weak in educating our students or facing new challenges.
Loh Wai Poon