Pre-school's 40-person excursion under probe for possible breach of Covid-19 rules

A group that appeared to consist of more than 40 teachers and children having a picnic in Pasir Ris Park on March 18, 2021.
A group that appeared to consist of more than 40 teachers and children having a picnic in Pasir Ris Park on March 18, 2021.ST PHOTO: IVAN KWEE

SINGAPORE - The Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) is investigating an excursion conducted by Cambridge Pre-school to Pasir Ris Park on Thursday (March 18).

The Straits Times spotted the group at the park at around 1pm. It appeared to consist of more than 40 teachers and children.

When approached, a woman from the group declined to give her name and claimed that they "had permission".

She also claimed that taking photos or videos of the group was not allowed.

The group was seated on picnic mats in three clusters, with more than eight pre-schoolers in each cluster.

Ms Fiona Lee, director of pre-school operations for Cambridge Pre-school Singapore, confirmed that the group was from her school.

"At Cambridge Pre-school, our children's safety and well-being are our utmost concern," she said.

"One of our pre-schools brought our little ones to Pasir Ris Park on March 18 to enjoy nature."

She did not answer queries about what action would be taken.

An ECDA spokesman said pre-school activities at external venues, including field trips and learning journeys, have been allowed to resume from the start of this year.

But safe management measures (SMMs) must still be observed, including a group size cap of 50, inclusive of all adults and children.

The children must also be split into groups of eight, with each group keeping at least 1m apart, and no intermingling.

Overnight camps remain suspended.

"We are currently looking into whether the pre-school had adhered to the SMMs," said the spokesman.

"If lapses are found, ECDA will take action against the pre-school and also work with them to ensure that future activities adhere to the prevailing SMMs."

Correction note: An earlier version of this article had said the group was on three picnic mats. This is inaccurate, and has been corrected to say they were in picnic mats in three clusters. We are sorry for the error.