ST roundtable on PSLE

Is a child's performance in the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) a key determinant of his or her success? How can parents and children best deal with PSLE pressures or lower-than-expected exam results?

And does the test still serve a necessary purpose to sort children into secondary school, or does it put too much emphasis on academic prowess in Singapore, which is one of the few countries to have a high-stakes exam for pupils as young as 12?

These questions and more will be discussed at a special roundtable this week organised by The Straits Times and presented by UOB.

Titled "How much does PSLE matter?", the roundtable will explore the link between academic results and career success, as well as alternative definitions of intelligence.

Panellists will include Ms Genevieve Chye, divisional director of the engagement and research division at the Education Ministry and a former principal of Montfort Junior School; Ms Denise Phua, a Member of Parliament for Jalan Besar GRC who heads the government parliamentary committee for education; and The Straits Times senior education correspondent Sandra Davie.

They will be joined by Mr Josephus Tan, a lawyer and director at Fortis Law Corporation who has used his own PSLE results to encourage students to look beyond exam skills; UOB executive director and head of group retail marketing Wendy Ong; managing director of education firm Nurture Craft Henry Toi; and former teacher and mother-of-five Tracey Or, who blogs about education issues.

Readers who would like to contribute questions to the discussion can e-mail them to

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 28, 2016, with the headline 'ST roundtable on PSLE'. Print Edition | Subscribe