Agape Little Uni. is honoured to have been invited by SEGi University & Colleges and WhyteHouse Education Group for the “Feel the Pulse Panel Discussion on the Singapore ECCE Landscape” over a zoom session on 1 December 2022. Our representative, Principal Mdm Lee Chin Yen from Agape Little Uni. @ Jurong West attended the session to share her perspective on the early childhood issues including professionalism, career pathways, challenges and solutions.
Let’s have a look at the topics discussed and the responses from our Principal, Mdm Lee Chin Yen.
Parental Expectations – do they influence/determine the EC practices in Singapore/your organization?
Parents’ unchanging expectation is that – “My child can be safe, happy and learning well”. Parents of the younger children would like more attention to be given to their child whereas parents of the older children would worry more about – “Does my child know how to read and count?”.
To bridge the parents’ expectations, we conduct briefings for the parents at the beginning of the year to inform them about what we will do for the year, including how we will involve parents in children’s learning, eg. parental involvement in centre events and celebrations, home-school projects once a term with Show & Tell whereby parents can help their child to prepare. When the focus is on their children’s learning, parents are supportive and will actively take actions to participate. We also conduct parent workshops based on the learnings of their responses and needs gathered from a pre-workshop survey.
Teachers’ Wellbeing & Feeling Burn-out – how is this aspect ‘taken care of’ in your setting/Singapore?
Some of the reasons why teachers are feeling burn-out include over-whelming work, lack of motivation and lack of control on what they really want to do. Teachers need to feel supported and loved. They also want to learn and grow, be empowered, able to solve problems and make decisions. They need to feel motivated and appreciated.
It is important to help teachers find their purpose and passion in working with the children, support them and help them be effective by pacing them at work. We will get parent’s to share words of encouragement during post-event surveys. This helps our teachers find their source of satisfaction and feel worthwhile working so hard when they see the fruits of their labour!
Recognition of ECCE Professionalism in Singapore (your organization – e.g., mentorship/training etc.)
In the recent years, we have received more recognition in the early childhood profession from the Government and parents. One way to gain respect from parents is to engage parents to be more involved in centre events and in their child’s learning and development. With the rapport and trusting relationships built, parents show more appreciation to the teachers’ hard work and “heart” work.