Time right to focus on moral education

It is encouraging to see Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong emphasise the importance of character and values for our students (To succeed, S'pore needs citizens with values: PM; Jan 6).

After five decades of a "paper chase" mentality, it is time to focus on character and moral education in the next phase of Singapore's development.

The experience of Mr Edwin Chaw ('I flunked the IP': Integrated Programme dropout shares his story; Dec 30, 2018), who saw first-hand how top students sometimes even resort to sabotage to get ahead, shows that education should not focus only on securing good examination results, but also on character building and becoming a socially responsible person.

Civic education at all levels is therefore imperative to inculcate the right values in our students.

Students should be taught to embrace failure and see it as part and parcel of not only school, but also adult life.

Being a socially responsible person should be treated as not only important for success in school, but also in society.

Our education system can truly be seen as a success if it produces not only students with the necessary skills to earn a living, but also ones imbued with the right values.

Seah Yam Meng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 10, 2019, with the headline 'Time right to focus on moral education'. Print Edition | Subscribe