Private education institutions (PEIs)

Published Date: 13 July 2015 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Christopher de Souza, Holland - Bukit Timah GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (a) how many private education institutions have had their registrations cancelled or not renewed by the Council for Private Education since the enactment of the Private Education Act; and (b) whether the Ministry will consider equipping prospective students with information about each private education institution’s track record in Singapore.

Response

The Private Education Act (“the Act”) was enacted in 2009 with the primary aim of protecting the interests of students, by setting basic standards in corporate and academic governance, strengthening student fee protection measures, and requiring private education institutions (PEIs) to disclose key information on courses and teachers.

Any PEI that has been found to have contravened the requirements of the Act can have its registration period shortened, suspended or cancelled. Since 2009, CPE has received a total of 526 complete applications for renewal of registration, of which 8 were rejected. Separately, 4 PEIs have had their registrations cancelled because of regulatory contraventions.

Details of regulatory actions that are taken against PEIs have been published on CPE’s website since 2011, and further enhancements have been made recently. Details of enforcement action taken are now published directly under the PEI’s profile page on CPE’s website, in addition to the separate section on enforcement actions. Former names of PEIs are also published along with their current names, so that the public will be able to find information pertaining to the track record of a PEI even if it has changed its company name.

Besides taking regulatory action, CPE engages students and parents through consumer education and student support initiatives. As part of its outreach efforts, CPE participates in fairs and talks targeted at students from local post-secondary education institutions. In 2013, it collaborated with the Ministry of Education (MOE)’s Career Guidance Branch to incorporate links to student guides developed by CPE on the Education and Career Guidance online portal, such as the “Guide for Choosing a Private Education Institution”. In the same year, CPE also implemented a “Student Advisories” section within its website to publish cautionary announcements and information that prospective students should take note of before choosing an institution.

CPE continues to work on enhancing its consumer education efforts to help prospective students and parents to make more informed choices.

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