In my Principal’s Message at the start of 2020, I had emphasized the importance of reflecting on our purposes in life and what success meant to each one of us. This was due to the acknowledgement that the future that awaits our students was evolving into one of volatility and complexity. Fast forward twelve months and this could not have been more resoundingly reinforced. The COVID-19 pandemic has taught all of us that we cannot take our stability, unity and all that we have worked hard for as a nation, for granted.
The pandemic heightened the need for all of us to cultivate a growth mindset and an attitude of continual learning and improvement. The challenges the students faced, be it having to go through hours of lessons adorning face masks or the home-based learning that required them to step out of their comfort zones and become more self-directed, enabled the students to truly embody the critical values of grit, resilience and determination to overcome adversity. These values, often deemed to be necessary to thrive in the 21st century workforce, would undoubtedly put them in good stead to be future-ready. Students were also introduced to varied methods of learning and have embraced home-based learning as a key tenet of our “new normal”.
Hence, the most important takeaway of 2020 is that change is the only true constant. All of us here at Yew Tee Primary School are strong proponents of developing the values of adaptability and flexibility amongst our students to embrace change, question our existing ideas and practices before refining them to suit the ever-changing local and global situations. Students also need to continue to be resilient and broaden their perspectives to understand what is happening around the world. Their pursuit of learning should be incessant and should not be determined solely by their examination results or how they perform in assessment tasks.
The Ministry of Education (MOE) and schools continue to make changes to reduce effort inflation and to create a better environment for holistic development. In 2021, the revised scoring system for the Primary School Leaving Examinations (PSLE) will come into effect. This is a key step taken by MOE to reduce the impact created by fine differentiation of students at a young age. By providing students with achievement levels instead of T-scores, students will be encouraged to gauge their performance relative to the objectives of the curriculum as opposed to their peers. This will allow students to focus on themselves as learners and be more intrinsically motivated to seek out meaningful learning opportunities. We seek your support as your child embarks on this new learning journey at Yew Tee Primary School. Join us in helping them discover their interests and talents. Give them the courage to bounce back from setbacks and most importantly, never cease to believe in them as they navigate their way through the crests and troughs of school life.
As we move into 2021, I would like to encourage all of us to adopt a growth mindset. We will not be able to foretell the future and what it holds for each and every one of us, but with a growth mindset and renewed vigour to embody our school values of integrity, responsibility, respect, perseverance and care, we will definitely be able to overcome any challenges that we encounter, be it individually or collectively as a school. Let us move forth into the new year with courage, determination and enthusiasm. All the very best for a meaningful year of learning!
Ms Ang Mui Khoong