Introducing quotas for students in the top, middle and bottom performance bands for admission into Secondary One

Published Date: 02 October 2017 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Gan Thiam Poh, Ang Mo Kio GRC


To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) whether the Ministry will consider introducing quotas for students in the top, middle and bottom performance bands for admission into Secondary One so as to create a more inclusive environment for students and reduce the monopoly of elite schools.


1. Most secondary schools already take in a full spectrum of Express, Normal (Academic) and Normal (Technical) students. This approach is appropriate and serves the students’ learning needs.

2. We do not believe that schools need to be identical in student profiles to be inclusive. A diverse school landscape allows for variety in school types and educational provisions, to match different student needs.

3. For instance, some Normal (Technical) students benefit from a more customised curriculum and pedagogy, as well as additional social-emotional learning support through whole-school activities. This is why we set up the specialised schools Crest and Spectra, which also have facilities customised for their unique curriculum and pedagogy.

4. We also have Specialised Independent Schools, which cater to students with talents and strong interests in specific fields such as the arts and sports. Integrated Programme schools provide 6-year programmes to cater to academically strong students who can benefit from more flexibility in pursuing broader learning experiences.

5. What is common for all students, regardless which school they attend, is our strong emphasis on values and Character and Citizenship Education. All schools provide their students with ample opportunity to interact and make friends with peers from diverse backgrounds, for example through co-curricular activities and Values In Action learning experiences. This remains core to our education mission, as we aim to nurture our students to be good citizens, who respect others and build an inclusive community and nation.

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