The systems and mechanisms by which a country administers education can have a serious impact not only on those that intends to teach, but also to the country as a whole and especially the future success of a nation. With this being true, it means that it is always important to keep an eye on these systems and the administration of education to make sure that they are effective and that they are serving the nation well.
In this regard, we have seen many starting to question the role of the Primary School Leaving Examination and the effects that it has on education in Singapore. This single test plays a major role in the lives of students and their education and while it is intended to serve some important functions, many believe that it also has some negative side effects.
One of the main purposes of the PSLE is to help make sure that the best and the brightest students are assigned to the best secondary schools. Where resources that are allocated to education are finite, you need to ensure that money is spent efficiently and to the greatest effect. While it is necessary to take measures to make sure that resources are used efficiently, giving one test such a great impact can create problems in and of itself.
This form of standardized testing puts teachers and schools in a tough position in regard to which track will serve the students best. On the one hand, a good teacher wants to inspire students to learn and provide them with an education that is well rounded and one that will enrich the student’s mind. On the other hand, they need to make sure that the student is prepared for this all-important test that will determine much of their future. With a situation like this, the end result can often be an education that is geared toward the test, rather than one that is focuses on growing the minds of the next generation.