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Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:01 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:38 am
What do you mean local law in med are diversifying their intake? My daughter’s best friends just attended the in US law inauguration ceremony today, and it was practically a Raffles alum reunion.
I think the local (Singapore) law and med tracks have been selecting more and more kids from other sources besides RJC/HCJC. There's still a concentration (for scholarships too), both by interest and ability, but it seems they want to admit a broader pool of applicants. Poly grads into med have been increasing too (granted, still a small portion).

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 8:34 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:42 am
There really isn’t much of a choice, at raffles it was very normal to fail and fail and fail, the kids would fail so much that they’d get very used to it, constantly working hard only to be left very discouraged. These kids were the same kids who were involved in CCA, but also were the kids who only focused on academics, so how do we explain this?
I don't think this really responds to what I wrote. There will be kids struggling everywhere. Some of the JCs set very hard papers to get the kids ready, and performance differs from where the kid scored at PSLE for any number of reasons.

The kids that are happy know grades or their ranking aren't everything. Quite frankly, a lot of it starts with the parents' attitude. There are parents with 2A rights into the SAP GEP Centres, could be called the hottest ticket in town. Yet not all parents feel the need to announce to everyone where their kid goes to school. Many of these parents just let the kid progress whether that means posting to the "top/elite" secondary schools, IP more broadly, or something else. In contrast, there are parents in these schools that have told themself it's a competitive environment, very stressful, etc, etc. Kid must be in this, must be in that, etc. The same could be said for any number of other popular schools with a large portion of kids scoring very well at PSLE.

If you talk about the environment and being surrounded by certain thoughts, which one of the above do you think is going to condition the kid to believe (even indirectly) that his/her school makes them important, his/her school is a key factor in who they are, his/her ranking in school is a determinant of what options they have ahead of themselves, he/she must do everything possible to make sure he/she qualifies for the “elite” or “top” band of whatever.

Some people chose to play the game with a different mindset (even those that go to top/elite schools) having learnt the pitfalls of such situations themselves. Yes, peers can influence the kids but it's not just the system and peers.

This is what I've tried to say in some other posts about the US. If the child is focused on certain types of schools/jobs and has the die die must try attitude then they are going to be stressed out there. It's not the school work or tests that drive competition and stress. It's the fact that there is limited vacancy and a lot of people want to get in. If your mindset is that your life/worth depends on [edited from no] making it, then you will be stressed.
Last edited by NYY1 on Sun, 31 Jul 2022 9:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 9:10 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:58 am
I’d say that in most cases, going through the IP is the best option. You have a guaranteed place at a relatively reputable JC, and know that consequently you can spend your secondary school years a little more relaxed and with a little more academic freedom since not every decision you make is made with the all levels in mind. The trade-off is that you will have your highest educational qualification be the PSLE until you complete the A levels, which isn’t a problem for most but in rare cases students do drop out before finishing, which leaves them in a very tough position.
Yes, in theory those are the pros and why the programmes were setup. Most will take it and on average it's a good move.

Some of the less talked about cons:
#1. Certain schools have an extremely high concentration of kids that are naturally very bright. If you mugged left and right to score at PSLE, academics will be much harder when the number of subjects doubles and there's no time for tuition. Like I said, how one enters and where one enters has a big impact on how secondary/JC life is.

#2. By definition, half the people in any cohort will be below average. Most people will accept that the last ranking person at MIT computer science is still pretty smart. Probably the same for GEP. For some reason, people have a difficulty accepting this in IP, whether the class is made up of top 3%-4% or top 10%. If one can't get away from ranking or relative standing, there will be pressure.

#3. The IP promotion criteria is not overly demanding. You can take a low grade in a class or two and still get promoted (some schools don't even make you put in in the calculation). In some ways, this makes sense; spend time on other areas and pour more effort into the subjects you will likely take in JC/uni. The downside is that you need a contrasting subject at the A levels, so if you always blow off the humanities (for science kids) you will have more work cut out for you in JC (or take the default option of Econ). In contrast, if you look at the L1R5 calculation and the move away from Triple Science, these kids will likely have taken two humanities subjects (1 full and 1 elective combined with social studies). They may be better positioned to score at the As and more well-rounded in general. If they are taking 8 subjects (common for O level kids targeting JC), they also known that they only need the scores in 6 of them (with some constraints). They do have one big exam but they don't need to fret day to day.

As for not finishing, if you finish IP4 you can also apply Poly via DAE (or target overseas if your parents can afford it). Some kids may have also moved to O level along the way, although the schools are trying to help more and more students make it to the corresponding JC these days.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by malcontent » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:00 am
You’re absolutely right. And seriously? You can use the certificate to skip JC? I wish I had known this two years ago, my daughter would be a sophomore by now.
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 11:23 am

malcontent wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
I'm surprised Michigan will take just the O Level (I know it works elsewhere), although they definitely do. Historically, Michigan's student body and post uni placement (for business) are a lot more national than most midwestern schools. i.e. maybe not quite the draw as the UC schools but it is still very well regarded.

The transfer game may have become harder over the years, although still possible (know of people that did it a decade ago or so).

This also shows Singapore has 39 students in U Michigan undegrad!
https://admissions.umich.edu/apply/firs ... nt-profile

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by Lisafuller » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:54 pm

NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:01 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:38 am
What do you mean local law in med are diversifying their intake? My daughter’s best friends just attended the in US law inauguration ceremony today, and it was practically a Raffles alum reunion.
I think the local (Singapore) law and med tracks have been selecting more and more kids from other sources besides RJC/HCJC. There's still a concentration (for scholarships too), both by interest and ability, but it seems they want to admit a broader pool of applicants. Poly grads into med have been increasing too (granted, still a small portion).
Definitely still a very very small portion. Though it is comforting if the figures are indeed rising. As for local law and med, I still think it’s very much reserved for elite schools only, but then again this can be explained by the fact that elite schools are typically the ones to produce high a level scorers, and when one of the only criteria for acceptance is RP, what do you expect?

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by Lisafuller » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:59 pm

NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 8:34 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:42 am
There really isn’t much of a choice, at raffles it was very normal to fail and fail and fail, the kids would fail so much that they’d get very used to it, constantly working hard only to be left very discouraged. These kids were the same kids who were involved in CCA, but also were the kids who only focused on academics, so how do we explain this?
I don't think this really responds to what I wrote. There will be kids struggling everywhere. Some of the JCs set very hard papers to get the kids ready, and performance differs from where the kid scored at PSLE for any number of reasons.

The kids that are happy know grades or their ranking aren't everything. Quite frankly, a lot of it starts with the parents' attitude. There are parents with 2A rights into the SAP GEP Centres, could be called the hottest ticket in town. Yet not all parents feel the need to announce to everyone where their kid goes to school. Many of these parents just let the kid progress whether that means posting to the "top/elite" secondary schools, IP more broadly, or something else. In contrast, there are parents in these schools that have told themself it's a competitive environment, very stressful, etc, etc. Kid must be in this, must be in that, etc. The same could be said for any number of other popular schools with a large portion of kids scoring very well at PSLE.

If you talk about the environment and being surrounded by certain thoughts, which one of the above do you think is going to condition the kid to believe (even indirectly) that his/her school makes them important, his/her school is a key factor in who they are, his/her ranking in school is a determinant of what options they have ahead of themselves, he/she must do everything possible to make sure he/she qualifies for the “elite” or “top” band of whatever.

Some people chose to play the game with a different mindset (even those that go to top/elite schools) having learnt the pitfalls of such situations themselves. Yes, peers can influence the kids but it's not just the system and peers.

This is what I've tried to say in some other posts about the US. If the child is focused on certain types of schools/jobs and has the die die must try attitude then they are going to be stressed out there. It's not the school work or tests that drive competition and stress. It's the fact that there is limited vacancy and a lot of people want to get in. If your mindset is that your life/worth depends on [edited from no] making it, then you will be stressed.
Personally, I’ve never pushed my daughter to study or do well in school. Though she is intrinsically self-motivated, I would have adopted the same attitude even if she wasn’t, as I always wanted her to grow up more balanced and laid-back, even if it meant underperforming compared to her peers. Still, while many of her friends have parents who adopt similarly hands off, easy-going attitudes, the friends are all consumed by the pressure to do well. And these kids don’t care about enrolling in med, dent or law, they’re simply competing to be the best of the best because they believe that that is what they need to do. In that sense, when you take away the pressure to get in to an exclusive program, and the pressure from parents to do well, the only explanation for why they must feel this way is because the environment is one that brings out this toxic competitive side. I understand that you might disagree, and that’s perfectly fair, but at least in my experience this has been the case.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by Lisafuller » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:02 pm

NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 9:10 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:58 am
I’d say that in most cases, going through the IP is the best option. You have a guaranteed place at a relatively reputable JC, and know that consequently you can spend your secondary school years a little more relaxed and with a little more academic freedom since not every decision you make is made with the all levels in mind. The trade-off is that you will have your highest educational qualification be the PSLE until you complete the A levels, which isn’t a problem for most but in rare cases students do drop out before finishing, which leaves them in a very tough position.
Yes, in theory those are the pros and why the programmes were setup. Most will take it and on average it's a good move.

Some of the less talked about cons:
#1. Certain schools have an extremely high concentration of kids that are naturally very bright. If you mugged left and right to score at PSLE, academics will be much harder when the number of subjects doubles and there's no time for tuition. Like I said, how one enters and where one enters has a big impact on how secondary/JC life is.

#2. By definition, half the people in any cohort will be below average. Most people will accept that the last ranking person at MIT computer science is still pretty smart. Probably the same for GEP. For some reason, people have a difficulty accepting this in IP, whether the class is made up of top 3%-4% or top 10%. If one can't get away from ranking or relative standing, there will be pressure.

#3. The IP promotion criteria is not overly demanding. You can take a low grade in a class or two and still get promoted (some schools don't even make you put in in the calculation). In some ways, this makes sense; spend time on other areas and pour more effort into the subjects you will likely take in JC/uni. The downside is that you need a contrasting subject at the A levels, so if you always blow off the humanities (for science kids) you will have more work cut out for you in JC (or take the default option of Econ). In contrast, if you look at the L1R5 calculation and the move away from Triple Science, these kids will likely have taken two humanities subjects (1 full and 1 elective combined with social studies). They may be better positioned to score at the As and more well-rounded in general. If they are taking 8 subjects (common for O level kids targeting JC), they also known that they only need the scores in 6 of them (with some constraints). They do have one big exam but they don't need to fret day to day.

As for not finishing, if you finish IP4 you can also apply Poly via DAE (or target overseas if your parents can afford it). Some kids may have also moved to O level along the way, although the schools are trying to help more and more students make it to the corresponding JC these days.
Excellent points. I do agree with most of what has been said, though I must say I’ve always seen Econ as more of a science, especially with the way it is taught in local JCs. I’ve always seen it as a loophole to allow science-brained students to succeed, since typically those who are very good at science don’t tend to have that same aptitude for the arts. As for promotional criteria, I can’t speak for other schools but at raffles it was very very rare to be retained, even if your GPA was somehow below two points on a four point scale, you would still have the option to proceed to the level above, albeit with conditions. So in that sense, yes promoting in IP schools is fairly easy.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by Lisafuller » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:05 pm

malcontent wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:00 am
You’re absolutely right. And seriously? You can use the certificate to skip JC? I wish I had known this two years ago, my daughter would be a sophomore by now.
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
That’s pretty awesome, I know your wife did it but are you sure it can still be done today? I don’t know many 16 year olds in college. It’s a little late for my daughter now as she has already completed her A levels, but this I’m sure would be a game changer for a lot of kids looking to study in the US. Would save them a hell of a lot of time and stress. Does she have any UC in particular that she is looking at? UCLA or Berkeley perhaps?

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by Lisafuller » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:07 pm

NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 11:23 am
malcontent wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
I'm surprised Michigan will take just the O Level (I know it works elsewhere), although they definitely do. Historically, Michigan's student body and post uni placement (for business) are a lot more national than most midwestern schools. i.e. maybe not quite the draw as the UC schools but it is still very well regarded.

The transfer game may have become harder over the years, although still possible (know of people that did it a decade ago or so).

This also shows Singapore has 39 students in U Michigan undegrad!
https://admissions.umich.edu/apply/firs ... nt-profile
Transferring today is even harder than getting in as a freshman, though it may be intuitive to believe the opposite. From what I understand, transfer acceptance rates at some of the most exclusive schools like the Ivies can be as low as 1%, or even less. This is simply because they offer such a small number of places each year, and are inevitably over subscribed. As for the number of local students at UMich, I personally know six girls studying there right now, my daughter’s seniors. I guess they are part of the statistic!

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by malcontent » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:25 pm

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:07 pm
NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 11:23 am
malcontent wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
I'm surprised Michigan will take just the O Level (I know it works elsewhere), although they definitely do. Historically, Michigan's student body and post uni placement (for business) are a lot more national than most midwestern schools. i.e. maybe not quite the draw as the UC schools but it is still very well regarded.

The transfer game may have become harder over the years, although still possible (know of people that did it a decade ago or so).

This also shows Singapore has 39 students in U Michigan undegrad!
https://admissions.umich.edu/apply/firs ... nt-profile
Transferring today is even harder than getting in as a freshman, though it may be intuitive to believe the opposite. From what I understand, transfer acceptance rates at some of the most exclusive schools like the Ivies can be as low as 1%, or even less. This is simply because they offer such a small number of places each year, and are inevitably over subscribed. As for the number of local students at UMich, I personally know six girls studying there right now, my daughter’s seniors. I guess they are part of the statistic!
I have heard similar things - harder to transfer - but only in relation to top schools. I believe it’s also harder to get in as a freshmen to top schools… but mid-tier and lower-tier are still fairly easy. Being from the latter myself, I don’t see it as a big loss if my kids can’t get into a top ranked university. In the US there are many hidden gems that are overlooked and have high acceptance rates. Indiana University is one example… their business program is absolutely top notch, well above many top schools — so you can still get an amazing education without scoring top marks to get in.
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by malcontent » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:42 pm

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:05 pm
malcontent wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 10:59 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:00 am
You’re absolutely right. And seriously? You can use the certificate to skip JC? I wish I had known this two years ago, my daughter would be a sophomore by now.
I’ve checked into this before, completing secondary school here is deemed equivalent to earning a high school diploma in the US. There are many universities (not the elite, but top 30-50) that outright recognize O-Levels for entry to their school, especially in the Midwest. Purdue is a good example, popular for engineering. Michigan is another, popular for business. In California, all UC schools require A-levels, but all California State Schools accept O-levels for entry. So for my daughter, since wants to go to a UC school, there’s no choice.

My wife did her O-levels in Singapore and went straight to university in the US, starting at an unranked school and then transferring. After a few years at this unranked school she got offers at Penn State and other good schools when she was looking to transfer. So it’s not just theoretical, you can really do it.
That’s pretty awesome, I know your wife did it but are you sure it can still be done today? I don’t know many 16 year olds in college. It’s a little late for my daughter now as she has already completed her A levels, but this I’m sure would be a game changer for a lot of kids looking to study in the US. Would save them a hell of a lot of time and stress. Does she have any UC in particular that she is looking at? UCLA or Berkeley perhaps?
Probably UCLA, but just about any of the more popular UC schools… before deciding it would be a good to know what her major is going to be; right now she has no idea. Berkeley would be best for business. Her cousin got into UC San Diego and will start there this fall — it is a little easier to get into… and I am pretty sure she will apply there as well.
Every great and deep difficulty bears in itself its own solution. It forces us to change our thinking in order to find it - Niels Bohr

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:00 pm

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 5:02 pm
Excellent points. I do agree with most of what has been said, though I must say I’ve always seen Econ as more of a science, especially with the way it is taught in local JCs. I’ve always seen it as a loophole to allow science-brained students to succeed, since typically those who are very good at science don’t tend to have that same aptitude for the arts.
...
Yes on Econ. I've thought that kids could benefit from taking a humanities in Sec 3-4 that they can continue with in JC. The topics/content won't be cumulative per se, but you stick with the training and learn how to improve in this one subject vs. having to jump to something new in JC (or go back to one of the core humanities that you haven't taken for 2 years). I guess for the science heavy kids if their brain just doesn't click with the traditional humanities that's a consideration.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:09 pm

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:59 pm
Personally, I’ve never pushed my daughter to study or do well in school. Though she is intrinsically self-motivated, I would have adopted the same attitude even if she wasn’t, as I always wanted her to grow up more balanced and laid-back, even if it meant underperforming compared to her peers. Still, while many of her friends have parents who adopt similarly hands off, easy-going attitudes, the friends are all consumed by the pressure to do well. And these kids don’t care about enrolling in med, dent or law, they’re simply competing to be the best of the best because they believe that that is what they need to do. In that sense, when you take away the pressure to get in to an exclusive program, and the pressure from parents to do well, the only explanation for why they must feel this way is because the environment is one that brings out this toxic competitive side. I understand that you might disagree, and that’s perfectly fair, but at least in my experience this has been the case.
Understand, thank you for your comments.

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Re: Primary 1 registration exercises - game changer

Post by NYY1 » Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:18 pm

Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 4:54 pm
NYY1 wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 7:01 am
Lisafuller wrote:
Sun, 31 Jul 2022 3:38 am
What do you mean local law in med are diversifying their intake? My daughter’s best friends just attended the in US law inauguration ceremony today, and it was practically a Raffles alum reunion.
I think the local (Singapore) law and med tracks have been selecting more and more kids from other sources besides RJC/HCJC. There's still a concentration (for scholarships too), both by interest and ability, but it seems they want to admit a broader pool of applicants. Poly grads into med have been increasing too (granted, still a small portion).
Definitely still a very very small portion. Though it is comforting if the figures are indeed rising. As for local law and med, I still think it’s very much reserved for elite schools only, but then again this can be explained by the fact that elite schools are typically the ones to produce high a level scorers, and when one of the only criteria for acceptance is RP, what do you expect?
I think some of the students are being distributed around a bit more every year too. ACS(I) via the IB is gaining popularity, and ACS(I) / MGS IP seem to have a strong following. Eunoia JC has also gone through four cycles of A Level results now and this (2022) is the third year of intake where students are all at the new campus. The SNGS-Cat High-SCGS trio has probably gained/retained some students because of this (some of their primary kids still go elsewhere if they can). Years back, some were hesitant about committing to the IP programme because there was no track record at EJC. But I don't think this is an open question anymore, as the result have been pretty good. Nanyang JC JAE COP has also dropped a lot over the years too (5 points now), it seems every popular among the O level to JC kids.

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