Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Please stop crying

"Jobs for Foreigners, NS for Singaporeans"??

Please lah, that's so out of fashion!

Meet the new slogan:
Schools for Foreigners.
Leftovers for Singaporeans!

The New Paper
Day of Tension, Agony & Ectasy
By Veena Bharwani
August 15, 2007

AT 5am, he was the first to register his child for the final phase of primary one registration that late July morning.

But yesterday afternoon, halfway through the balloting process at Canberra Primary, as he listened to the names being called out, Mr Thangavel Pandi thought being the first was his biggest mistake.

Said Mr Thangavel, 34, an Indian national and permanent resident here: 'I went very early in the morning for the registration, thinking it would give my son better odds.

'I was the first in line and only after 15 minutes did more parents show up to register.

'But today, as I looked at them fishing names out of the ballot bowl, I thought since he was the first to be registered, his name would be right at the bottom. I started to lose confidence.'

He started to pray that whoever it was that was fishing the names out of the bowl would thoroughly shuffle the cards that held the names of more than 200 students.

He needn't have worried. Mr Thangavel's son's was the 78th name to be called out.

As expected, Mr Thangavel, his wife T Karpa Valli, 29, and their son Sushin Thangavel, 6, leapt with joy.

'I'm so happy. I had done research on all the schools nearby. I went to all their websites and I really liked this school,' said Mr Thangavel, a manager at Toshiba.

Registering early does not give any child an edge over another. All names written on cards are put into a bowl and mixed thoroughly throughout the process to ensure fairness.

At Canberra Primary, there were 96 places available for 255 applicants.

Principal Ratnasingam Selvarani, 59, said some parents started queueing for the waiting list even before the balloting ended.

'We open the wait list after the balloting process ends. But by the middle of the process, more than 50 parents were already in queue to be waitlisted for the school,' she said.


She added: 'The parents come in pairs. One is upstairs listening to the names being called, and the other standing in the waitlist queue. Then they communicate with each other on the handphone.

'So the queue gets a bit shorter at the end as those successful in the balloting process drop out of the queue.'

Those on the waiting list may get a place later in the year or next year when vacancies open up.

Yesterday, balloting was held at 73 schools during the final phase - phase 2C - of the registration. This is for children with no ties to the school, or who have been unsuccessful in earlier stages.

Mr Thangavel was not the only one who waited in agony.

Mr Dennis Olivera, 33, an engineer, appeared tense throughout the process, but flashed a bright smile when he heard his daughter's name, Denise Samantha Olivera, called out - right at the end, the 92nd name.


Not everyone was as lucky.

Madam Boo Sock Li, who was vying for places for her twin boys Kwa Yu Heng and Kwa Yu Lian, both 6, went home disappointed as both didn't get a place.

The boys were given one ballot card, so if one boy's name was called out, the other would get a place too.

Said Madam Boo: 'I'm disappointed as this school was my first choice. It's right across from my block. Now we'll have to look for another school.'

Over at West Grove Primary in Jurong, a parent who declined to give her name cried profusely after her son didn't get in the school.

'I just got divorced and I'm supporting myself. Now, I have to take another day off to register my son at another school,' she said.

The school was popular - 316 applicants living within a 1km radius of the school have registered for 125 places.

Some parents, however, appeared less caught up in the balloting frenzy.

At Maris Stella Primary School, balloting was conducted among 29 candidates for only two places.

Teo Hong Rui and Wesley Chang Wai Woka, both 6, won the ballot.

But when their names were announced, there was no reaction from the crowd of parents gathered.

Why? Both the boys and their parents weren't present during the balloting.

Can some kind reader please explain to me why Madam Boo Sock Li was disappointed?

Disappointed with what?

Isn't it our honour to give up our children's slots in our schools to new permanent residents?

Heck, that's what we 66.6% voted for: to replace ourselves with foreigners for the sake of Singapore!

How can Madam Boo be so forgetful as to what she or 66.6% of her neighbours voted to do?

Madam Boo should instead have walked up to Mr. Thangavel and said:
"Dear Sir,
Today, both my Singapore-born Singapore-citizen sons serve your family well by giving up their school places to your India-born India-citizen son. BUT THAT'S NOT ENOUGH! 12 years later, I will make sure my two sons serve your family again, by doing NS to protect you and your wife's safety, while your son is away from Singapore, having given up his PR to avoid NS! BUT THAT'S NOT ENOUGH! So, another 12 years after that, when you son comes back to Singapore as a "new" PR, in need of a job but too old to do NS, my children will give up their jobs so that your son can have one. Having no jobs, my two sons will then kill time, by doing more reservists and IPPT to ensure the safety and pleasure of your family! The honour is ours, Sir!"

Like that, then got style mah!

Geez, one parent even cried.

Why? Crazy is it?

To serve foreigners who have become PR, is an honour!

These crying and disappointed parents should simply treat this school slots issue as a "practice run". A kind of initiation for their sons for things to come later in life:

Today it's a place in a school. Tomorrow, it is a job in the real world.

Better start early and learn from young!

I think we, members of Young Pay-And-Pay, have a lot more to do, to educate these people to live up to their votes and not cry!

Crying will scare our esteemed guests away!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Well, as you said: "learn from young"! Now cry, then later won't cry when doing NS or kana retrenched, 'cos no more tears to shed!