Singapore can only remain successful if we continue to have generations of Singaporeans who understand that success is a team sport, said Education Minister Chan Chun Sing.
Speaking at the Institute of Policy Studies Singapore Perspectives 2023, Mr Chan said everyone has the responsibility to pay it forward.
“We are all here not just because of our hard work and intelligence, but also because of the opportunities provided by our system and our predecessors,” he said. “As such, it is integral for the more successful, the more talented and the better endowed to take care of those with less,” he added.
Our mark of true distinction as a society is how much we contribute to others and the larger good, said Mr Chan.
Collaboration, not individualism
We cannot shield ourselves from competition.
The more successful we are as a country, the greater our risk of us seeing the world as we want it, rather than as it is, or to think that the Government can insulate us from the harsh realities of the world beyond Singapore.
“Such perspectives will threaten our ability to remain relevant and make a living through connecting with the world,” Mr Chan said.
Therefore, it is critical that our education system helps our people to deeply understand the world as it is and learn how to navigate the uncertainties and untidiness from young.
Collaboration must be our strength and Singaporeans must distinguish ourselves as a team, rather than as a collection of individuals, Mr Chan said. We must see beyond our ability to achieve alone.
Confidence in our abilities, respect for our diverse strengths
Mr Chan said our confidence in our respective abilities, and respect for our diverse strengths will make us a more cohesive and compassionate society.
“We must build a culture of celebrating and nurturing diversity, to bring out the best in every child, to strengthen our collective resilience,” he said.
Don't diminish creativity through rote learning
“While it is said that we cannot teach curiosity or creativity, we must certainly not diminish them through rote learning, distracted by chasing the marginal last mark, and chasing after the same narrow definition of success”