Recently, there are a lot of discussion over whether is tuition becoming a necessity for our students in Singapore. For the benefit of readers who are unfamiliar with the term tuition, it actually refers to the extra private lessons enrolled by parents for his children to attend out of school curriculum time. To me I always like the analogy of using work – To put it simply is to ‘volunteer’ your kid to do OT ( overtime ) after office hours. I always look at those kids waiting for their tuition to start in tuition centre with a sense of sorry for them, especially on weekend mornings. Oh my, imagine yourself doing OT for all days including weekend!
This has again not been a new discovery and has been around since decades. Just when you thought that perhaps tuition classes only apply those who scored poorly for their grades then you are so wrong! From the recent news, it was reported that even students scoring an A grade choose to have tuition so that they could maintain their academic performance. Hence it is not to my surprise that the tuition industry has actually contributed about $200 over million to the Singapore’s GDP.
However this got me thinking that are we over-emphasing education that parents are resorting to chip in their very last cent into their child’s tuition fee. Is it really a necessity for all student to have tuition? Aren’t there should be anything much more they could do to enrich their childhood so to better prepare themselves for adulthood?
Education is necessary
Yes, as a young adult who has worked for 2 years, I must agree that a graduate certificate do provide you with an ‘ENTRY TICKET’ to many job opportunities in Singapore. It definitely able to pave a way to your desired career especially what you studied in school is actually what you wanted to do upon graduation. At the very least, school do equipped students with the essentials such as literacy and numeracy. My friends and I even joked about school has done an excellent job in training our memory skills as we are often being expected to memorise tons of facts and equations before stepping into the examination hall.
Education is not about all
If you have been reading carefully, I mentioned above that education is just an entry ticket. It has NO GUARANTEE on what your future will be like. Doesn’t mean you are a first class honours graduate you will always be the top performer of your organisation. Likewise, having just pass your grades doesn’t mean you will be the worst performer in your organisation. It largely depend on your PERFORMANCE as an individual or team player to what you or your team has been tasked. So for scholars out there, please do not be complacent and continue to keep up the good work of striking personal excellence in your workplace!
Then what completes the picture?
In short I would say is your soft skills! According to forbes.com: Top Five Personality Traits Employers Hire Most, the qualities that a future employer seeking out for are:
2. High Energy
4. Self Monitoring
5. Intellectual Curiosity
I would like to add in having great interpersonal skills to the above list and I believe the list could go on and on…
So.. dear readers, as you can see that education although vital, it requires one’s traits or soft skills to complement. Especially in the highly competitive society that we are living in, almost everyone have the chance of receiving formal education, hence it would be your soft skills and experience that set you apart from other job candidates. Hence, I hope Singapore parents could spare a thought for their kids, giving them a chance to develop other skills sets such as creativity and interpersonal skills in their growing years.
I would definitely think twice before sending my kids to tuition classes unless they are deemed necessary for him or her to cope and catch up with his/her peers. If not, I would rather let him/her do their own playing or get engage in their hobbies so as to learn important skill sets along the way. If really have to attend some classes, I recommend parents to send him/her for enriching workshop/classes instead. For example public speaking workshop or music literacy rather just drilling and drilling on school subjects.