Channel NewsAsia

ITE and poly students welcome ASPIRE recommendations

Some students also suggested companies could have more flexible arrangements to enable students to balance both work and study commitments.

SINGAPORE: Students from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE) and polytechnics Channel NewsAsia spoke to welcomed recommendations like the place-and-train programme, released by the the Applied Study in Polytechnics and ITE Review (ASPIRE) Committee on Monday (Aug 25). But they suggested that companies could have a more flexible arrangement to enable students to balance both work and study commitments.

Others said having an education and career guidance programme would help them make a more informed choice. Said Singapore Polytechnic student Edgar Tok: "With this career guidance programme, it will help me make a more beneficial choice. I know what course I want to take, what I want to do in future."

The ASPIRE Committee acknowledged that the transformation of the education landscape will take time, perhaps even years. It said while the Government and industry play their role, parents also need to change their mindset of preferring a degree qualification over others.

But for people we spoke to on the street - a degree still trumps a diploma. Ms Angie Lim said: "I think it's all right for (my child) to pursue a diploma, because it's a life skill. But ultimately, I'll still prefer him to pursue a degree, if in the future, a degree still commands a higher pay."

Ms Matilda Martini had similar sentiments. "It's still very outcome-based and really depends on what's being implemented. Personally, I have had a diploma and a degree, and the difference is pretty big."