The debate on the need for tuition has been heating up.
Shin Min Daily reported that toddlers as young as three are going for tuition, and even those who get good grades in school are not spared.
Senior Minister of State for Education and Law Indranee Rajah said in Parliament recently: "Our education system is run on the basis that tuition is not necessary."
This comment has spurred a number of parents to send in letters to the newspapers, pointing out the importance of tuition.
Some parents have voiced out that each child has his or her own needs and demands, and not all are able to cope with the pace of school.
Ms Lin, 25, who has been teaching in a tuition centre for five years, said there were quite a few pupils who scored As in attendance at the tuition centre.
Ms Lin, who personally feels not everyone needs tuition, said some children are unable to focus on their studies and hence parents feel they need the extra boost.
The key thing, she said, is to see how the child progresses.
Her youngest student? A three-year-old girl whom she taught Mandarin to.
Primary and Secondary school private tutor Ms Liao, 27, said half of her pupils scored As in their subjects, but they still came for tuition.
Apart from the parents having the kiasu mentality, "another reason might be that pupils apparently also need to answer questions outside their curriculum," she said.
Private tutor Ms Wu, 34, also commented: "If pupils are unable to keep up with the pace of the lessons, this can also be a form of stress."
Tuition for pupils with poor grades
Experts that Shin Min Daily spoke to said that tuition is beneficial if it can help a child who is unable to keep up with the pace of lessons in school.
"A child may suffer from inferiority complex and give up on his or her studies. If tuition can help, then there is no harm in going for it," said counsellor Ms Wu.
Tuition for pupils with good grades
On the contrary, pupils with good grades might be getting tuition to improve their chances of getting into their school's Integrated Programme (IP).
"Whether tuition becomes a source of stress for the pupil, or if it will affect the pupil in any way, that all depends on what the child wants," said psychologist Mr Yang.
"Tuition can benefit the child if he or she wants to excel further," he concluded.
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