Now showing 1 - 6 of 6
  • Publication
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    Through the lens of the school: School-based curriculum innovation (SCI)
    (Office of Education Research, National Institute of Education, Singapore, 2020)
    Chen, Der-Thanq
    ;
    ; ;
    Chua, Catherine Siew Kheng
    ;
    Neo, Wei Leng
    ;
    Lee, Wei Ching
    Over the past decade, the Singapore government has introduced various initiatives such as Teach Less, Learn More and engaging minds to develop students’ 21st century competencies. One significant approach adopted in these initiatives is to encourage school-based curriculum innovations (SCI).This current initiative involves the participation of all schools in the system. A marked departure from previous practice, schools in Singapore now have more autonomy and space in SCIs through engaging in school-based curriculum development (SBCD) activities. In this study, we used the terms SCI and SBCD interchangeably. This study is novel in taking a comprehensive approach in developing this baseline research of curricular and pedagogical reforms of nine schools in Singapore.
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  • Publication
    Restricted
    Of perspectives and policy: a case study of the implementation of the subject-based banding policy in one Singapore primary school
    Streaming has been part of the Singapore primary school system school since 1979. In 2008, it went through a major revamp with the implementation of the Subject-based Banding (SbB) policy. For the first time in three decades of a streamed system, pupils are allowed access to subjects across the higher and lower curriculum levels. One policy analyst I spoke to saw SbB as a means of detracking Singapore's primary school system. Streaming is an emotive issue for many Singaporean parents anxious about the consequent effect of streaming on their child's school career and consequent life chances. Each year it gets some airtime in parliament and a share of column inches in the newspapers, variously couched in the discourses of fair educational access and opportunities and social mobility. Yet there is little we know about streaming in our primary schools by way of educational research that can better inform these discussions.

    This study locates itself in the field of sense-making policy implementation research to look into how the SbB policy was defined, decided on and practiced in one neighbourhood primary school, and to what effect on the pupils it was meant to serve. It investigated the perspectives that policy actors on the school site held in implementing the policy. The perspectives and experiences of a group of Primary 6 pupils on the receiving end of the school's decision-making with the policy were included in the research. The study also evolved to examine insights on the comparative perspectives of four principals.

    Policy actors were found privileging certain policy messages as stimuli to form their perspectives and direct their line of action with the policy, and neglected others. SbB was meant to serve two groups of pupils but three out of the four principals in the study directed their decision-making to only one group. SbB presents two objectives but all four principals did not attend to the second objective in carrying through the policy.

    SbB exacted more demand on policy actors on the school sites compared to the past streaming practice. My study was done in the second year of SbB's implementation, when policy actors were still sense-making way around the policy. The theoretical understandings and practical implications with which I concluded my study however, point to the fact that this is a policy that will require much more modifications in its 'symbolic centre', as well in the tangible and intangible structures of primary schools and primary schooling in Singapore than what I was able to find.
      1044  388
  • Publication
    Metadata only
    A survey of critical literacy education in Singapore

    At its best, critical literacy involves the analysis and critique of social structures, texts that embed power relations, and active engagement in the reconstruction of social structures. This chapter examines the state of critical literacy within and about education in the discursive spaces of Singapore society referencing available research. We will first provide the background to the discursive parameters in the nation state which are determined hegemonically by the ideology and policies of a ruling party which has been in power over five decades. The section on the background of the prioritization of economic development and the harnessing of education to produce productive citizens within this hegemonic ecology is followed by our review of available past and present literature on Singapore’s critical literacy practices, especially within education.

    Based on these, we paint a rather grey image of critical literacy within the collective process that may support the development of its members, especially young learners, within Singapore classrooms. However, we note that the reality may be more ambivalent. We also note that Singapore teachers need to understand their crucial role as intellectual labour in effectively interrogating and communicating ideational content.

      18
  • Publication
    Open Access
    Through the lens of the school: School-based curriculum innovation (SCI)
    (2015)
    Chen, Der-Thanq
    ;
    ; ;
    Chua, Catherine Siew Kheng
    ;
    Neo, Wei Leng
    ;
    Lee, Wei Ching
      226  256
  • Publication
    Metadata only
    Researching well-being for children with low-income family background in Singapore: For whom and from whose perspective?
    (Springer, 2022)
    Layne, Heidi
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    ;
    Jesuvadian, Mercy
    ;
    Dhannea Rohaizad
    Firstly, this chapter presents a review on what the current body of work – both international and local – indicates about research on childhood, inclusion and well-being for children from low-income family background. Secondly, it introduces a research initiative on the Child Support Model (CSM) developed by NTUC First Campus for low-income families in early learning context in Singapore. This chapter asserts that inclusion and well-being need to be recognised from a holistic perspective as a part of early childhood practices. Contemporary early childhood pedagogy, according to Pramling and Pramling (Educational encounters: Nordic studies in early childhood didactics. Springer, Dordrecht, 2011), refers to the interaction and communication between a teacher, a child and the learning environment, based on the achievement of intersubjectivity or sustained shared thinking (Siraj-Blatchford, Asia-Pac J Res Early Child Educ 1: 3–23, 2007). Therefore, we propose understanding of inclusion as a part of early childhood practices to serve children with diverse backgrounds beyond developmental delays. Furthermore, the chapter aims to discuss the meaning of well-being and problematises the idea of ‘low-progress’, often associated with children from low-income homes, thus confirming deficit theories where failure is attributed to the individual. The chapter then introduces the possibility of inclusion to meet the needs of individual children in a diversity of families within the low-income categorisations and beyond.
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