10 must-reads for today

Manpower Minister and PAP Community Foundation (PCF) executive committee chairman Josephine Teo joining PCF Sparkletots Kindergarten 2 children taking part in a Cajon class at Goodman Arts Centre yesterday. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
Manpower Minister and PAP Community Foundation (PCF) executive committee chairman Josephine Teo joining PCF Sparkletots Kindergarten 2 children taking part in a Cajon class at Goodman Arts Centre yesterday. ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM

1. More pre-school funding

About 10,000 low-income families each year will benefit from increased pre-school funding and expanded eligibility criteria. The PAP Community Foundation will pump in $2 million a year over the next three years into a fund that supports low-income families with Singaporean children at its Sparkletots centres.

2. Growth slowdown to persist

Economic activity is set to stay lacklustre over the next 18 months and wages are set to grow slower. The Monetary Authority of Singapore said the trade-related cluster faces "significant uncertainties".

3. VES extended by a year

The Vehicular Emissions Scheme (VES) will be extended by one year to Dec 31 next year. Originally due to expire at the end of this year, the scheme, which rewards buyers of cleaner car models with rebates of up to $20,000, has been effective in encouraging the sale of such cars.

4. Higher risk of sea-level rise

Rising seas could affect three times more people by 2050 than previously thought, according to new research, threatening to all but erase some of the world's major coastal cities. The research shows 150 million people are living on land that will be below the high-tide line by mid-century. 

5. Boeing CEO's admission

Boeing's chief executive Dennis Muilenburg faced the relatives of the victims of two deadly crashes of its 737 Max jet at a congressional hearing this week. He admitted he knew that a top pilot had voiced concerns about the plane while it was in development.

6. Top schools too insular?

Raffles Girls' School's move out of the Orchard area to the Toa Payoh estate has put the spotlight on whether elite schools are doing enough to help its students improve social mixing, says education correspondent Amelia Teng (above).

7. Breathing in bugs

Scientists here have done the first study of the atmosphere in a tropical region to understand what people here inhale and how it possibly impacts them. With every breath, people inhale tens of thousands of micro-organisms which can have an effect on those with respiratory illnesses.

8. MPA's new digital platform

Deputy Prime Minister Heng Swee Keat yesterday launched the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore's (MPA) new digital platform for providing one-stop clearance for vessel-related transactions. It will simplify the current reporting process required by three public agencies for all ships arriving in and departing from Singapore.

9. Transforming kids

In her 32 years of involvement in school sports, Qihua Primary School principal Lee Hui Feng’s proudest moment has been seeing pupils develop sportsmanship and integrity. She was among the educators honoured yesterday for their services to the two school sports councils.

10. Comedy's timely message

The Addams Family, the newest comedy celebrating the adorably macabre clan, takes on weighty issues such as xenophobia and the pitfalls of social media. Its cast and directors think its deeper message - about not shunning people just because they are different - could not be more timely. 


Straits Times Digital

VIDEO

Arduous journey to have kids

After one miscarriage, two cycles of in-vitro fertilisation treatment and about $90,000 spent on fertility procedures, Ms Angelina Ong and her husband finally became parents in 2017. This is her story. str.sg/blurb29


VIDEO

Assam residents fear wrongful detention

Almost two million people in Assam, India, have been left out of a citizen registry, whose final list was published in August to sift out undocumented immigrants. This means they could end up in detention centres. str.sg/blurb30

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 31, 2019, with the headline '10 must-reads for today'. Print Edition | Subscribe