Last Friday, 7 July, six young teachers received the Outstanding Youth in Education Award (OYEA) from Second Minister for Education, Dr Maliki Osman, at the National Institute of Education (NIE) Teachers’ Investiture Ceremony. Three of them were from Catholic schools:
- Ms Shobana D/O Sreetharan, 29, Holy Innocents’ Primary School;
- Ms Khairunnisa Binte Ismail, 30, St Gabriel’s Secondary School;
- Ms Sum Kar Mun, 34, CHIJ Secondary (Toa Payoh).
Ms S. Purnima Janani from Catholic High School (Secondary) was also one of the ten finalists, from which the OYEA recipients were chosen by a selection panel comprised of representatives from MOE, NIE, the National Youth Council, and members of MOE’s COMPASS (COMmunity and PArents in Support of Schools) group.
These finalists were selected from 2,932 nominations from schools and members of the public, for 1,488 teachers from 241 schools.
The Ministry of Education reports:
“The OYEA is a national award that recognises young teachers for their commendable enthusiasm, energy, and for being inspiring role models for the fraternity. Since its inception in 1999, 102 outstanding young educators have received the award to date.”
“These young teachers have worked closely with other stakeholders in achieving these educational outcomes, employing innovative pedagogical approaches, and leveraging technology to engage their students in meaningful learning experiences.
“Some of these experiences include designing activities and programmes for their students to make relevant connections to real-life contexts, using games and apps to assess their students’ learning, and creating opportunities for their students to have a deeper understanding of self and others, as well as to impart life skills in the process.”
OYEA recipients are awarded a trophy and certificate, along with sponsorship for an overseas professional development programme and a professional development grant of $1,000 to attend either overseas or local conferences, seminars, or courses.
OYEA commends young teachers who exemplify that education ought to form students in a holistic manner, fostering a love of lifelong learning, developing resilience and empathy, as well as critical thinking and problem-solving skills. MOE states that OYEA is also meant to inspire youths to pursue the vocation of teaching as a “fulfilling profession”.