It is my pleasure to join you here again at this year’s Panasonic Kid Witness News Awards (KWN) ceremony. This is the fourth year I’ve been invited as the Guest-of-Honour and it gives me great pleasure to join you. I think this is a very good opportunity and platform for students to learn skills about video production and learn about issues around them. With the guidance of the teachers, I think you
have learnt about the important things in the lives of people in Singapore. What Panasonic KWN has offered to you is an opportunity to identify issues that are important to the people around you and this opportunity develops further the learning and educational experiences of our students. That is why I am happy to continue to support this effort.

I would like to congratulate Panasonic for their sustained support for KWN, which I understand has been running internationally for 26 years and, in Singapore, the past 11 years.

I am very glad to note that over the years, Singapore students have performed well and made their mark on the global stage. I remember that in 2011, Sembawang Secondary School won the Local, Regional as well as the Global awards.

Education is important, but it does not only take place in the classroom. You may learn from your teachers, but it is through participation in activities or work outside the classroom, including the community, that provides you with greater awareness of what is important in our lives. I appreciate very much what the teachers have done for the students participating in KWN. The best teachers encourage and inspire students to observe, examine and think about what’s happening around them in society and the world; to identify the issues and think of what they can do about it.

A platform like KWN provides the opportunity for students to harness their creativity, develop communication skills and learn to work as a team to present an idea to a wider audience. These are all valuable life-skills that will enable our students to thrive beyond the classroom.

It is encouraging to note that this programme is not restricted to the older students, as we saw last year when the top award went to Fuhua Primary School. They became the first primary school to win in 10 years.

I hope this will encourage all of you, whether or not you win an award today, to persevere in your exploration of the world around you. You can make a difference no matter how old you are.

I look forward to seeing what you have to say in this year’s entries, and wish you all the best. And to the teachers here, I wish to express my appreciation of your supervision and encouragement of your students as you guided them in these projects.

Thank you.