SINGAPORE: The Ministry of Education (MOE) on Saturday (Feb 16) unveiled a set of guidelines to help parents work with schools to get their children to take ownership of their learning.
The guidelines include having a good home routine and a conducive environment for learning.
Parents are also encouraged to respect the teachers' time by contacting them only during school hours.
While these pointers are not new, MOE said this is the first time it is issuing clear guidelines, in light of increased parental involvement.
MOE added that the guidelines, which were created in consultation with schools and parents over the past year, are meant to support parents and students following changes in the education landscape, such as the reduced emphasis on grades.
Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Education, Associate Professor Muhammad Faishal Ibrahim announced the guidelines at Yu Neng Primary School during a parent engagement event.
“There are things beyond academic grades. There are self-management skills, taking ownership, responsibility. Things are changing so fast, you need to be nimble, flexible and you need to have that resilience to reap the opportunities that are there, as well as face challenges,” he said.
Mdm Zuraida Akbar, who has been an educator for about 16 years, welcomed the guidelines. She shared that there are parents who would be too reliant on teachers for updates and information.
To get pupils to play an active role in communication, Mdm Zuraida said she makes sure to leave clear instructions on the board so that the students have sufficient time to pen them down for their parents.
“For parents, it's also about not letting go, wanting to know whether the child is telling the truth. But we interact with the parents on a regular basis and [also bring them back] to the fact that we want the best for their children, and at the same time, we want them to take responsibility for their learning,” she said.
One of the guidelines also encouraged parents to let their children forget things.
Brandon Ng, who is a father of two, told Channel NewsAsia that despite its simplicity, this point was essential to character development.
“Last year, my daughter forgot to bring one of her books to school. I discussed with my wife to find out what we should do. Should we bring it to the general office for her? But after discussion, we decided to let her face the consequences and learn from the incident.
“I think it’s okay for them to make mistakes in a safe environment. I rather she does it now than later, where she cannot handle problems on her own,” he said.