Boost ahead for pre-schools? What more can be done to raise pre-school standards?

Government leaders have promised to treat pre-school education the way they treat housing and healthcare. What does this mean for the sector, which traditionally has been dominated by private providers? What more can be done to raise pre-school standards?

In the 1940s and 1950s, kindergartens in Singapore catered to the wealthy few, while government-run creches were set up to care for poor children.

Then came Independence in 1965. The People's Association ran kindergartens in community centres. During rapid industrialisation in the 1970s, more centres were added to encourage women to work. From the 1980s, the ruling People's Action Party (PAP) operated kindergartens on a large scale under the PAP Community Foundation (PCF). Throughout the 1990s and 2000s, pre-school was the domain of private providers.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 20, 2019, with the headline 'Boost ahead for pre-schools?'. Print Edition | Subscribe