19 July 2017
Singapore is currently in the midst of transforming both the education system as well as the economy to take advantage of new technologies, in essence, to remake the nation into a high-tech hub. One programme, the “Smart Nation” initiative, puts heavy emphasis on teaching Singapore students skills that will prepare them to deal with a digital economy.
Government spending on local education has increased steadily over the years to around 17 percent of its annual budget. The education budget pays for better teachers and infrastructure, as well as subsidizes Singapore students so that education remains affordable for every deserving student.
Excluding government subsidies, Singapore is the third most expensive country in the world to educate a student up to the university level, according to a recent survey published by HSBC Holdings. This means that government assistance to working and middle class Singaporeans remains critical in ensuring that every Singaporean child gets the education he or she needs. It also means that foreigners have to bear a high cost of educating their children here.
The Ministry of Education said rising education costs are due to improvements in the quality of teaching, upgraded infrastructure and curriculum enhancements. At universities, the curriculum has been adjusted to prepare students with computer-related skills, with enrollment spaces for technology-related programs increasing and new computer courses constantly being introduced.