Compulsory Education Act

Published Date: 15 August 2016 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Dr Lim Wee Kiak, Sembawang GRC


To ask the Acting Minister for Education (Schools) since the Compulsory Education Act came into force in 2003 (a) whether there has been 100% enrolment for primary school and, if not, what are the challenges; and (b) how many parents are charged each year for failing to send their children to attend primary school.


The Compulsory Education (CE) Act requires all Singaporean children above the age of 6 and below the age of 15 who are residing in Singapore to regularly attend a national primary school, unless they are exempted from doing so. We hold parents accountable for this, as well as their children’s participation in the Primary One (P1) registration exercise in the year the children turn 6.

Most parents dutifully register their children in our national primary schools unless they are exempted for valid reasons. For instance, some children have special educational needs or are enrolled in designated schools. A small number of parents also obtain approval to home-school their children.

To date, we have not found it necessary to resort to prosecution. No parents have been charged under the Compulsory Education Act since its inception.

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