In this issue, Professor S Gopinathan gives us an update of CRPP’s developments and what we hope to achieve.
Greetings, all readers of SingTeach!
I welcome this opportunity to convey CRPP’s greetings to all of you in the schools. This is an especially stressful time for many of you as teachers and parents as your schools prepare students for the all-important final examinations. Professor Luke mentioned in his message in SingTeach June 2005 that Singapore is “one of the most education-obsessed places in the world”. I would add that we are even more obsessed with assessments and examinations!
But we all know that the work of educators is more than smart examination preparation. As educators, we are all committed to developing in our students a range of competencies and dispositions. This would be difficult even in settled systems as there are really no “best practices” strategies that, like a good recipe will turn out good “dishes” everytime – and we know that even good recipes cannot do that all the time! It is even more difficult in times of rapid change and raised expectations. You need to be sure that the changes you are making as individual teachers, with your peers in your schools, match not only the letter but also the spirit of recent changes in curriculum.
At CRPP, we remain convinced that teachers will benefit from sound research that helps them see where they are succeeding and where more effort is required. And we are certain that teachers would welcome the opportunity to tell “their side of the story”. At our inaugural conference in June, we were impressed by the number of teacher participants and their active involvement in the conference activities. SingTeach is for you. Continue to tell us what makes things work for you, what you need help with and more generally, how CRPP can help teachers in schools make teaching more rewarding and professional.
Now, to bring you up to date with developments in CRPP. We have completed the first major phase of our research, mapping the terrain of Singapore pedagogy; and once again we thank you for your generosity in allowing us access to your classrooms and so readily sharing with us your insights. We are now beginning to plan for some selected interventions that will help us see how improvements to pedagogy can be made. We want to ensure that suggestions for improvements take account of existing realities and do not represent a call to do more. And if the new skills require more and relevant professional development activities, we will ensure that is provided.
In this new phase of interventions, SingTeach will continue to be a resource to teachers and schools. We hope you will continue to support us; and do tell your friends to check us out.
Vice Dean, CRPP
For more information about CRPP’s research, click here.