More pupils who sat the Primary School Leaving Examination (PSLE) this year made it to the Express stream in secondary school compared to last year.
Of the 43,047 Primary 6 students who took the exam, 66.7 per cent qualified for the Express stream, up from 63.1 per cent last year. Of the cohort, 19.9 per cent made it to the Normal (Academic) stream and 10.9 per cent to the Normal (Technical) course.
Results released on Friday showed that overall, 97.5 per cent of the cohort were assessed suitable to proceed to secondary school, similar to last year.
But in a departure from previous years, the result slips handed out to pupils on Friday came without the highest and lowest scores achieved by pupils in the cohort. The Ministry of Education, which announced the change earlier this week, said it was to allow pupils to focus on their own achievements and holistic development. Last year, the top and bottom scores were 285 and 43. This followed the ministry's decision last year to end the practice of naming the top PSLE scorer so as to bring balance to the over-emphasis on academic results.
In line with the new approach, some schools on Friday chose to single out pupils who were all-rounders, and others celebrated the achievements of pupils who made good progress despite the odds. Nanyang Primary, which produced the top PSLE scorer last year, flashed the names of pupils who scored more than 260 on a chart but did not name the top scorer. At Jing Shan Primary School in Ang Mo Kio, which achieved its best results in nine years, the principal read out the names of those who repeated PSLE and did well, before going on to the foundation pupils and those who scored more than 250.
Yesterday, the ministry also had some advice for parents on how to pick the right secondary school for their children. "Parents are advised to consider the proximity of the school from home, the suitability of the learning environment given their child's learning needs and interests (e.g. school programmes, niches and co-curricular activities offered by the school), and the previous posting aggregate ranges of the school, amongst other factors," said the ministry in a press release on Friday. "The previous year's posting aggregate range can serve as a guide, but the eventual range may vary depending on demand patterns and cohort size for that year."
Pupils have until Nov 28 to submit their choice of secondary schools. Posting results will be out on Dec 20.