06.09.2014

Speech by Mr K Barathan, CEO, SINDA at the SINDA Excellence Awards Ceremony 2014 on 6 September 2014 at Nanyang Polytechnic Auditorium

 

Mr S. Iswaran, Minister, Prime Minister’s Office And Second Minister For Home Affairs And Second Minister For Trade And Industry

Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, DPM, Minister for Finance, and Chairman, SINDA Board of Trustees

Ms Indranee Rajah, Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Law and Ministry of Education and President, SINDA Executive Committee

Ms Vijay Thakur Singh, High Commissioner of India

Members of the SINDA Board of Trustees and Executive Committee

Distinguished Guests, Award Recipients, Parents

Ladies and Gentlemen

 

Welcome to the 23rd SINDA Excellence Awards Ceremony. It gives me great pleasure to meet all of you today. The SINDA Excellence Award is the highest award given by SINDA to students who have done well in their respective academic fields, in sports, or the arts. This awards ceremony was first introduced in 1992, recognizing academic excellence. Since 2008, we have expanded the categories to recognize outstanding performance in non-academic areas such as sports and the arts as well.  I am happy to share that this year we have more than 500 students who have qualified across 22 categories. This is one of the highest in recent years. It is certainly heartening to know that our Indian students are doing better in the landmark examinations and excelling in the fields of arts and sports.

In 2012, our students made a significant leap in PSLE Mathematics and Science and in GCE O Level Mathematics.  The percentage of Indian students getting A* to C in PSLE Mathematics went up to 80%. This is the highest it has been since 2003.

Similarly for PSLE Science, 87.2% of our students scored A* to C, which is also the highest since 2003. Nearly 80% of our students passed GCE O Level Mathematics, making it the best performance in the last 10 years. More of our students are also completing their tertiary education, which is key to upward social mobility.

About 94% of students from each academic cohort go on to complete post-secondary education. The percentage of Primary1 cohort admitted to post-secondary institutions went up from 82% in 2003, to 93.8% in 2012. The number of students graduating from both local and leading overseas Universities is also steadily rising.

This success is a result of effective collaboration and a strong partnership between schools, parents and community organizations. Such cooperation and collaboration between key stakeholders, with the student at the core, will certainly benefit more students. SINDA hopes to partner more organizations and institutions to achieve our mission – which is to help each student to reach their maximum potential, regardless of their family background or circumstances.

SINDA’s mission is to build a well-educated, resilient and confident community of Indians, and one which will thrive in and contribute towards the progress of our multi-racial Singapore.

Our four key thrusts are:

  • Maximizing educational opportunities for all students
  • Inspiring youths towards greater achievements
  • Engaging parents to play an active role in their children’s lives
  • Forging a stronger relationship with community partners

In line with this, we work closely with various community organisations to reach out to and support parents, children and youths. The Education Division engages teachers and students through tuition programmes such as STEP and Project Teach, as well as other ad hoc academic enrichment programmes to supplement what students are taught in school.

The Family division reaches out to parents, pre-school and primary-level children and runs programmes to support family development.  The SINDA Youth Club and Youth Division conduct several activities and programmes to engage, motivate, nurture and groom our youths to ensure they aspire and strive for more and achieve more.

We also provide scholarships, and study awards for students in partnership with several private institutions and organizations. The Saadhana programme conducted by SINDA, in partnership with NUS Tamil Language Society, has helped to improve the passing rates of around 120 A level students every year. Similarly our Ace the Race peer mentorship programme where University undergraduates mentor A level students has seen about 90% of the A level students successfully make it to University.

Annually, we impact about 20,000 individuals, through our various programmes and services, all geared towards the betterment of our community.

This year, the SEA recipients, range from PSLE to tertiary level students. I am also very happy to note that there are a number of students from SINDA’s programmes, among the award recipients in the ‘O’ Level and ‘A’ Level categories. This reflects the success of our programmes, and we aim to continue increasing our reach.

Once again, I would like to congratulate all of the SEA recipients and their families here today. I am sure that it is a very proud day for all of you. I also hope the community will come together in every way, to continue to support the academic development of our students.

Thank you.

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