Parenting woes – Education choices

I never thought I need to worry about Kpo Kia’s education at age of 2.5 years old.

Long before I was married, I always have the struggle on whether I should give birth as the current education system in Singapore is so competitive that I cannot decide if I should let my kid(s) play more, or study harder to have a better paper for more opportunity. At that time I told myself I shall not give birth to save the hassle of such decision.

As usual, life does not always goes with what ones wish for. I’m eventually married and Kpo Kia comes along, as the only child, the whole family’s attention has always been on her, and only her.

So yesterday I was told that parents of 2014 babies can start their parent volunteer this year. OMG. I was still in my Lala land, trying to adapt to this extra being appearing in my life (yes, even if she exist for almost 3 years by now), and I have to start worry for her education by next year.

For those who do not know about Singapore education system, all children are supposed to be enrolled to primary school (unless they can get exemption from MOE). And there are some complicated Registration Phases to register a kid into a primary school.

So I had a few separate whatsapp conversation with different group of friends, and below are some views shared by the different parents when I express desired to let Kpo Kia try to get into Kpo Kia’s papa primary school in order to tap on the PHASE 2A(2) category – children whose parent has studied in the primary school of choice.

Group 1
Friend A (used to study in ‘branded Junior collage’): Go for it! If she cannot cope can pull her out of school any time and put into a neighbourhood school. At least she got the chance to explore her potential.

Group 2
Friend B (who just secured a slot in branded school for her kid1 who will be going to Primary 1 next year, and it means the sibling will probably get into the same branded school): To be honest, don’t force your kid to get into branded school. Every child is different. Im actually kind of worried now if they will be happier there or in another school. In fact for once I was hoping we don’t get the (branded school) slot then I can apply another school on next phase.

Group 3
Friend D (who enrolled her kids in a branded childcare and did parent volunteer previously): Just got for the nearest.

While the general feedback from most is that branded school == stress == unhappy childhood, I am more keen toward Friend A suggestion. For I was in almost branded school before (top 40 then), but I wasn’t happy, and not much happier when I was in non-branded school. Yet, interestingly enough, I still have primary school, secondary school and polytechnic friends who keep in contact with me and stay by me when I need friends.

So the key is probably back to the eco-system of how the principal lead a school combine with the teaching teaching the class and the classmates will actually contribute to the happiness factor of a kid. I strongly believe the confidence level of a child is mainly influenced by the parents but also impacted by the educator and people of his or her social circles.

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