Student Anxiety

Published Date: 11 September 2017 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Dr Lim Wee Kiak, Sembawang GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) in light of a recent study by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development which reveals that Singapore students suffer from high levels of anxiety (a) what is the Ministry doing to help reduce this anxiety; and (b) how many students have been identified and counselled for anxiety attacks in the last two years.

Response

1. We adopt a holistic approach to education. Students are given a wider range of programmes that cater to their interests and build strong foundations for their lives. This is done through the Applied Learning Programmes and Learning for Life Programmes offered by schools, as well as the many opportunities and platforms for authentic student experiences in outdoor education and Co-Curricular Activities.

2. We discourage excessive competition among students and help them find purpose in their learning instead of just focusing solely on results and achievement. We have stopped naming the top scorers for national examinations. From the 2021 PSLE, students will be graded in broad bands and their achievement will not be dependent on the performance of the rest of the cohort.

3. Schools have a range of programmes to equip students with social and emotional competencies, stress-coping skills and realistic target-setting to better manage their emotions, stress and expectations.

4. We have been carefully monitoring the level of stress and anxiety among our students. The majority of students can manage their stress and anxiety. In 2016, around 5 out of every 1000 students were given counselling support in school to manage anxiety arising from academic stress. We will continue to monitor and take proactive steps to ensure our students’ wellbeing.

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