Politics are already being taught in the classroom

I was reading Kwan Yin Jiao’s letter to TODAY, which was titled, ‘Class, let’s talk politics’. He was replying to Dr Ng Eng Hen’s comment that ‘Competition is good for politics in S’pore‘.

Kwan commented that students these days are clueless about the politics these days and having political education in schools can help to change the ‘I don’t give two hoots’ attitude.

As a student, I cringed when my counterparts knew nothing about the left and right on the political spectrum, and more than happy to lead their own lives and go with the flow.

Political education would not only rid individuals of their apathy and lethargy, but also root students with a greater sense of belonging. The advent of the Internet has made the flow of information inevitable, so why not give it a more tangible form in institutions?

An education in politics, in the school context, would allow students to read more and comprehend the policies proposed or enacted by the different political parties.

The enhanced sensibilities and intellect would empower them to make wise decisions – whether they are in the public sector or not – in the future. In this sense, political education does go a long, long way.

He carried on to say that though basic exposure to politics is taught in ‘three local colleges’, which he doesn’t name, more can be done at ‘institutes of higher learning with fundamental lessons and discussions on politics.’

While basic exposure to politics is provided for tertiary students in the three local colleges – through ministerial forums and informal dialogues with politicians on both sides – it would be constructive to provide students in institutes of higher learning with fundamental lessons and discussions on politics.

Innovative lessons can be incorporated in terms of the sharing of varying political systems – historically and currently – as well as an assortment of political ideologies.

This are interesting suggestions. But believe it or not, Kwan’s suggestions are already in place, albeit, the wrong way. Because we have the so-called ‘National Education’, which is already brainwashing school children from primary school levels upwards.

Which is why, according to Callan Tham, ‘Singaporeans, now believes, for better or worse, the government is the country, and that the PAP is the government.’

‘National Education’ has, for many years chose to sing praises of the PAP and ignoring the fact that PAP is lying to Singaporeans.

Want evidence? Look no further than a 14 year old teenager. To me, her letter sounds like a rant, but beneath all the angry words, we can see the propaganda ideology that ‘National Education’ has planted in the minds of our school kids.

In school, sometimes we have CME or PG lessons and the teacher gives the class a worksheet which sings praises about what PAP has done for the people. One I recall from memory, was roughly,
“Every time I see old folks gathering recyclables from a garbage can on the street, my heart laments for them. The people these days are lacking filial piety…” …. “…I am glad that the government is helping the needy with assistance schemes. The government is doing a good job.”
Obviously there is something very wrong there. I thought to myself, ‘if the government is doing a good job, then why are these old folks gathering and selling recyclables?’
I asked the teacher so, but he just shrugged and replied that he doesn’t know why.
So do you know why students nowadays are clueless about the political spectrum? Because there is none, according to ‘National Education’.
Sadly, the only political ideologies that are being taught are the PAP’s. It’s deplorable and saddening that Singapore’s young minds are being brainwashed when at their age, they can’t separate fact from fiction.
Kwan’s suggestions will only be useful if the PAP stop poisoning our minds. Till then, our students’ minds will continually be poisoned with PAP’s propaganda.
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4 Comments

Filed under Politics, Singapore

4 responses to “Politics are already being taught in the classroom

  1. Ack, I think I will disagree with most of his letter. It’s a bit foolhardy to want MORE people to be interested in politics just because it might get taught in school. We can’t all say we’re generally interested in every subject we learned in formal education.

    I think people will be more open to discussing about politics, not when it’s a subject, but when it becomes part of our everyday lives.

    ie. Reading the news more, forming opinions, discussing opinions, become involved in grassroots events.. etc.

    All these things, you don’t need someone to teach you.

  2. Pingback: Do We Really Need To Teach Politics? – singularity industries

  3. I guess now you understand my point 🙂

  4. Just look at the Social Studies textbooks in secondary schools. They are pretty much thinly-veiled propaganda with a very half-hearted attempt at being objective.

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