What is the hardest decision that most 12-years-old kids must make if residing in Singapore? Chances are that it is choosing the secondary school that they would like to spend the next few years of their lives in. It was for me at least. Graduating from primary school was just a milestone, and the decision of choosing a suitable secondary school put a tremendous amount of pressure on me. The jump from primary to secondary is a major transition, and I had the not the slightest idea of what to expect.
There were so many options: Normal academic stream, Express academic stream, Normal Technical, Secondary, Integrated Programme, International Baccalaureate, etc. All these foreign terms came gushing out of my friends and relatives’ mouths, making me unable to comprehend what was in front of me. Eventually, I took the time to research and understand more about Singapore’s secondary education system and was able to make my decision.
I decided on the 6-years IP Programme. It is a relatively new education system, and many are unfamiliar with it. Taken from the MOE website, “The Integrated Programmes (IP) will provide an integrated secondary and JC education where secondary school pupils can proceed to JC without taking the GCE ‘O’ Level Examinations. Schools offering IP will optimise the time freed up from preparing for the GCE ‘O’ Levels to stretch pupils and provide greater breadth in the academic and non-academic curriculum. However, these schools will continue to have school-based assessments to measure pupils’ progress.”
Most parents and students are concerned whether their child or themselves should take the IP. I think that the IP has both advantages and disadvantages, which I will outline in the next post.
By Britney Thong