Co-curricular Activities (CCA) are an integral part of holistic education. They provide an important platform for students’ character development, while allowing them to discover and develop their interests and talents.
Students can take part in CCA without having to go for performances or competitions. Schools offer a range of CCA to meet the needs of students. While there are CCA that provide more competition experiences, students can choose from many that are recreational or focus on serving the community1. Some schools also offer modular CCA or recreational sports CCA2, where students do not represent the school in competitions. Beyond CCA, many schools offer enrichment programmes in sports and the arts that provide students with quality exposure, but which do not culminate in competitions or performances.
In certain CCA, particularly those related to music and dance, public performances are useful platforms to enrich the experiences of students, helping them to develop confidence and a mind-set of excellence. While competitions should not be overdone, they have a place in developing attributes such as grit, determination, resilience and teamwork.
MOE does not set Key Performance Indicators for schools in CCA. Earlier, schools had received recognition in the form of awards for aesthetics, uniformed groups, sports and academic value-added. From 2014, MOE has simplified the recognition system and these awards have been removed. Instead, the emphasis is on recognition of schools’ quality practices in delivering a holistic education, such as the best practice award for Character and Citizenship Education. Revisions have also been made to the Singapore Youth Festival since 2013 to better emphasise the process of learning and enjoyment of the arts.
MOE will continue to work closely with schools to strike a good balance for students’ holistic development. While schools do strive to meet students’ diverse needs by providing a range of CCA, it is not feasible for every CCA to be in every school. We encourage parents, students and schools to keep the channels of communication open as they monitor students’ development through the different learning activities so that they benefit from a well-balanced education.