45% Jump in Applications for National Arts Education Award 2006

 

More students are receiving holistic, well-rounded education as schools place greater emphasis on the arts. A total of 45 applications were received for the National Arts Education (NAE) Award 2006, a 45% increase from the 31 entries in 2004. This year’s figure is nearly triple that of three years ago, when the Award was first handed out. Quality-wise, there was also a marked improvement in applications across the cohort.

 

Co-assessed by the National Arts Council (NAC) and the Ministry of Education (MOE), the Award recognises best practices in the provision and promotion of arts education in schools. This year, it was presented to secondary schools and one Centralised Institute. The Award is presented to primary schools in alternate years.

 

Dunman High School (DHS), a Silver Award recipient in 2003, is the sole Gold Award recipient this year. In addition to school excursions and arts immersion programmes, the school has forged partnerships with professional arts organisations locally and overseas. They include the Singapore Symphony Orchestra, LASALLE-SIA College of the Arts, Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Music and the Music Conservatorium of Griffith University in Queensland, Australia. The school also ropes in parental support through arts activities organised by its Parent Support Group. DHS’s outstanding arts programme has even been used as a benchmark by other primary and secondary schools.

 

The Silver Award was presented to five schools. Four of them – Ang Mo Kio Secondary School, Crescent Girls’ School, Raffles Girls’ School (Secondary) and Tanjong Katong Girls’ School – were first-time Award recipients. The fifth, Chung Chung High School (Main), was a Bronze Award winner in 2003.

 

“There has been a strong showing of both first-time recipients and past recipients who have improved their rankings. This is certainly an encouraging trend as more schools are showing keen passion and well-thought dedication to better incorporate the arts into their curriculum and culture,” said Ms Chua Ai Liang, Director, Audience Development, NAC.

 

This year’s NAE Award Steering Committee is chaired by Ms Ho Peng, Director, Curriculum Planning and Development Division, MOE. Other committee members comprise officials from NAC and MOE. Applications are judged on three areas: School Policy and Planning, Implementation of Programmes, and Arts Achievement and Arts Culture.

 

"The NAE Award is a platform to celebrate the efforts and achievements of our schools in arts education. More schools are using the NAE Award framework to guide them in their planning and implementation of arts programmes.  In the long term, there will be greater joint efforts by MOE and NAC to reach out to all schools to leverage on the NAE Award framework to achieve a vibrant culture of learning and appreciation of the arts," said Ms Ho.

 

The Steering Committee announced that as of this year, the Gold, Silver and Bronze NAE Award will have a validity period of 4 years. This recognises the comprehensive processes put in place by the awardees, and provides a meaningful length of time between applications for awardees to refine their arts programmes.  

 

The schools’ increasingly sophisticated processes and arts-friendly culture have inspired profound reactions in their students. Said Ou Xin Ying, a Secondary 4 DHS student enrolled in both the Music Elective Programme and String Ensemble, “Co-curricular activities help a lot in educating me about the arts. As our school is strong in performing arts, we get a lot of exposure to different performances. Four years in DHS have allowed me to be exposed to a wide variety of performances from Beijing Opera to Western music.”

 

Added Kan Shi Pei, a Secondary 4 Deyi Secondary School student, “It has been a fruitful journey as I get chances to perform. I also learn to manage stress better and be more responsible in my work as a leader.”

 

The 2006 Awards were presented by Minister for Information, Communications and the Arts, Dr Lee Boon Yang, at a ceremony today at the University Cultural Centre, National University of Singapore.

 

For more information, please refer to the attached:

Annexes 

  • Results of the National Arts Education Award 2006
  • Outstanding Features of Winning Schools
  • Criteria of the National Arts Education Award