On Facebook

Should the alumni priority for primary schools be scrapped?

Even though I'm from one of the more desirable primary schools, I've always thought it unfair... However, a friend reminded me that alumni are the ones who built the school's reputation and they continue to contribute to their alma mater after graduating. So it's reasonable for alumni to get an upper hand during registration.

Shijia Kelle

As long as you attended a school, you are an alumnus of that school. So the phase for alumni benefits almost all parents here, except for those who were not educated locally. It is just that some people do not want to enrol their children in their alma mater for personal reasons and start feeling disgruntled about not being able to place their children in the schools of their choice.

Chen Hwey Fang

No matter what criteria MOE sets, those who feel disadvantaged will complain. You may as well argue that those with sibling or distance priority are also "born lucky" - they didn't do anything to "earn" those advantages either.

Umm Yusof

Yes, scrap it. Unless that alumnus has been contributing back to the school.

Wong Charmaine

Scrap it! I can't get my kid into the nearest schools simply because they are "elite" neighbourhood schools and alumni have priority. They would rather take in students that stay in another town than my kid who stays opposite the school. This is an unfair system.

Lilian Lin

A writer is against granting NS deferment to any athlete, even if he is likely to compete in the Olympics. What do you think?

Singapore must be strict with deferment. If deferment is frequent and common, then, keeping track of deferred enlistees will make it harder for the administrators, and make a mockery of our SAF. We should not pander to populism, but instead understand why the criteria for deferment is strict and limited to exceptional cases.

Sangha Vandana

What if someone has the potential to be a champion like Joseph Schooling? Consider it on a case-by-case basis. Why kill talent?

King No

To be fair to everyone, all should serve national service (NS) first regardless of one's potential as a future Olympic champ or medal prospect. After all, two years serving your country is a short time and you still have the time and facilities to train during your NS.

Peter Tan

In times of war, top footballers and social media moguls would be useless if they don't know how to dig a trench or pitch a basha tent. That's why, no matter what talent they have, they have to serve in NS first.

Wee Jin Tan

Many may think they can do something fantastic if only NS didn't get in the way. And perhaps it's even true, given that those are the prime years of our lives. But that's the sacrifice every son of Singapore makes. Why should only some be allowed to pursue their dreams? So to be fair, let everyone serve when they should.

Justin Koh

National service is about owing allegiance and serving with pride. You show you care, they will come back to serve with pride.

How do we make it possible for youngsters to take care of their country with pride as well as pursue their dreams on the global stage and make us proud? That is something for us to work on.

We are not supposed to produce a whole generation of disgruntled soldiers.

Piu Roy

We can get potential Olympic athletes to serve the nation in other ways, like mentoring or teaching at the Sports School or going back to serve NS when they retire from competitive sport, in the administration office. Their training for the Olympics isn't less gruelling than Basic Military Training.

Wendii Lam


Will bringing back the Malaysia Cup reignite fans' interest in Singapore's football scene? What other measures would fill stadiums during local matches?

Yes, bring it back. Soccer fans love inter-state competitions that allow them to cheer their own.

Harry Chia

Look beyond Malaysia. Reference Iceland and Croatia to learn how to keep football alive and progressing on our small island.

Notty Gigi

A little too late now. In the 70s soccer at the National Stadium managed to integrate our multicultural population. But we dropped the ball when most primary schools stopped having a soccer team. Passion for team sports has been lost in our education system.

Ajay Singh

The local soccer scene lacks career paths for players. The opportunity to play abroad in the Japanese or Korean leagues or even the lower divisions in Europe should be tabled before local players. Deserving local players should be sent for trials with the assistance of the Football Association of Singapore (FAS). The FAS should thus have a bilateral relationship with these football associations to promote our players.

Jay Pillai

That ship has sailed. Look around - there aren't enough soccer pitches or open grounds for youth to play soccer.

Ranjit Singh

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 24, 2018, with the headline 'On Facebook'. Print Edition | Subscribe