No more T-score
In an endeavour to reduce the emphasis on results, the PSLE will be revamped.
In 2021, the aggregate score, which has often been criticised for causing excessive stress among pupils, will be removed.
The new scoring system converts marks into grade bands 1 to 8, so a child’s PSLE scores will be the sum of grades in all subjects, with 4 being the best score.
Mridula Sairam (pictured above), who was the top Indian pupil in 200 with a score of 281, believes these grade bands can help to reduce unnecessary competition, and the stress that comes with learning.
She is pursuing a double degree in business management and economics at Singapore Management University and aspires to become a management consultant.
But the mindset that academic achievement is all that matters will take time to change, she told ST.
“The PSLE might seem like a huge milestone, but years later, I can say with confidence that it does not define you.
It would be very unfortunate for anyone to limit his self-worth to the numbers on a certificate.”
According to National University of Singapore economics lecturer Kelvin Seah, research shows that people who do well academically early in life tend to also excel in their studies and jobs later in life.
(Also read: 6 ways to help your child manage PSLE stress)
A good PSLE score creates opportunities for students to study in selective secondary schools, where peers tend to be higher-achieving.
But there can be exceptions, he told ST. “There are now multiple education pathways, which means that it is possible for a person to acquire a degree and be eligible for a higher-paying job even if he or she does not do very well for the PSLE.”
That’s one lesson parents might want to pick up, too.
A version of this article first appeared in The Straits Times.
(Photos: The Straits Times)
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