Plan kids' schedules according to their personalities

While I can understand Dr Quek Koh Choon's concerns about stressing students with tuition, extra-curricular activities and enrichment programmes ("Let's not make our children sick with drive for success"; Jan 5), I also agree with Ms Low Siew Hua ("Not all children suffer because of tuition"; Monday) that tuition is not necessarily a source of undue pressure on students.

This is because there is a wide variety of students, each with a different combination of character and family background.

Thus, what is beneficial or detrimental for one student may not be so for another.

For a self-motivated perfectionist, additional work outside school curriculum time will only provide more impetus for him to achieve goals set for himself.

This could possibly result in overwork, lack of sleep and worry over work not done or not done well, leading to poor physical and emotional health.

However, for a carefree student whose parents are too busy to spend time with him after school hours, he needs to be kept occupied with programmes to avoid falling into bad company and being led astray.

In fact, tutors can sometimes play the role of parents when their students confide in them, by giving them sensible advice from an adult's point of view, thus reducing the stress level of the student. This is especially true of dual-income families where parents can hardly find time to spend with their children on weekdays.

Therefore, it is the responsibility of parents to size up their children when deciding on the actions they have to take.

Yeo Boon Eng (Ms)

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 13, 2016, with the headline 'Plan kids' schedules according to their personalities'. Print Edition | Subscribe