Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Principals Meet (Times Of India Report)

The following news item was brought to our attention today. Will this make a difference ? Your comments are welcome!

School meet to improve education

29 Oct 2007, 0000 hrs IST

Nearly 70 heads of schools from across the Asia-Pacific region came together recently to discuss innovations in education. Hosted by the Global Indian Foundation (GIF), the two-day conference marked the fifth foundation day of the Global Indian International Schools (GIIS).

Ashok Ganguly, chairman, Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), G Balasubramanium, former director (academics), CBSE, and C S Dharmadhikari, vice-president, GIF, were among the Indian delegates present for the meet.

During his address, Ganguly stressed on making CBSE-affiliated schools global in their outlook and upgrade their curriculum to international standards. He opined: "In the era of globalisation education cannot function in isolation. It is necessary for principals of schools affiliated to CBSE to know about policies and practices followed the world over."

[Source: Read full Times Of India Report ]

QT Infrastructure: main items

  • Library is cut in half to make classroom. Restore proper Library facility.
  • Many PCs in IT lab not working or not usable. Replace them.
  • Stop selling carbonated soft drinks at vending machine. (banned in MOE schools!!!)
  • Class rooms look shabby, need brushing up. But office and admin areas which are already quite good are constantly "upgraded". Stop misuse of the $
  • Toilets and canteen area are not clean enough. Make an attempt.
    [Principal, please visit any MOE school or a proper International school in S'pore].
  • On rainy days wet corridors are slippery. Install awning to keep rainwater
    away from corridor.
  • Need more public phone (accepting both coins and cards): 1 outside office area, 2 near canteen area but away from crowd area (known as Little India among kids).
  • Need 1 more drinking water fountain (near playground/field)
  • Playground: Area from gate to cricket net is slushy (that's why kids are going home with muddy shoes every other day)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Calling for more committed parents, to help make GIIS Singapore a bit better !

[UPDATED 23 Nov 2007. For current actions see BLOG MAIN PAGE.]

Singapore, 27 Oct 2007

Parents Caucus says: If you have a child in GIIS, Singapore, this is of interest to you !

This is a community self-service blog dedicated to improving GIIS.

Background: We parents have been hit by deep frustration and cynicism for sometime now, trying to deal with GIIS School related matters. Some of you have said that you are "fed up", but haven't gotten around to do much about it either. Some others have learned to adjust the expectation level, but still want to see certain areas improved. Some of you moms and dads have stated that you are unable to carry out the persistent follow-up that it takes to get anything done here. No wonder many issues get left behind. Many issues keep resurfacing.

This is an attempt to work together as a community to solve all these problems keeping everything on record.

We encourage posting of the key common issues but individual issues can also be posted here (hopefully not too many of these).

Vision: The community can also invite a PSG representative to take note of the issue after it is recorded. Today PSG seems to spend much time in recording our issues or taking minutes etc. After that, we can also invite the school management and the teachers.

With one click, we can email a page to the Principal ! [Click on the icon at the bottom of a post, to send email. -Ed] (We can handle Queenstown and East Coast specific issues and common issues, all separately categorized as needed, with a bit of discipline in tagging the posts properly). This will help everyone keep track of issues, organize and prioritize them and work towards their resolution and proper closure. After all, these issues belong to us (you), the community of parents, teachers, and management. If we don't take care of them, nobody will. That is the essence of our vision.

You can help yourself to realise the vision, by joining this effort. But before you join... here is a message for all of us:
We try not to get dragged into GIF-related / sensitive topics, especially those which are not related to the condition of GIIS. This blog's aim is not to compete with the other so-called 'GIIS petition forum/blog'. Our goal in this community is to get what we rightfully deserve, as customers of GIIS: quality education for all students of GIIS in Singapore. We care very little about GIF matters if we can obtain quality education from GIIS. Is it attainable ? We think it is... just needs more work on our part ! As customers it is our duty to keep our eyes and ears open and speak out when we see that things are not going right. If we fail in that duty, it is no good to blame GIIS (or GIF) for their sloppiness; we will have to share the blame. This is the key point behind our vision in stepping forward to enable this community.

Now for the next steps... You can participate actively in two modalities:
  1. As a member of the blog community (preferred). You can post your issues to this blog as a blog member.
  2. As a commentator on already open posts. You can only add your comments or suggestion to existing posts made by members of the community.
You can certainly participate as a reader or observer, without signing in.
Wish to join ? See instructions on how to join the community.
Rules: Please see rules for details. Main highlights are given below:
  • Only Blog members can post: This community does not allow anonymous posting. But... wait ! All we need is your Google Account / Blogger profile (free registration, see how to join the community).
  • Openness, Responsibility
  • No tolerance towards offensive posts
  • Respect for Privacy for all
  • Goal focussed
With that, we, the Parents Caucus, hands this forum over to you, the community of parents. Good Luck !
[UPDATED 23 Nov 2007. For current actions visit BLOG MAIN PAGE]

© Parents Caucus, All Rights Reserved

How to Join

NEW: You can now get a short e-mail message (max 1/day) when posts are added. Type your e-mail ID & click the "Subscribe" button. E-mailing is handled by FEEDBURNER.COM (a Google company) which will ask for confirm/ subscribe/ unsubscribe etc. NOTE: If you are using hotmail or yahoo ID, you may face Spam/Anti-Spam problems. GMail is OK and is more secure.
Notify me when this page is updated. Use G-Mail only !
email:Delivered by FeedBurner

How ou can help:
1) Spread the word to other GIIS QT/EC/Balestier parents
2) Subscribe to regular e-mail notification (above)
3) Join as a member of the blog who writes and posts.

Who can join (as a member who can post under own ID) ?
  • Parents/Teachers/Management of GIIS, S'pore, QT, EC, Balestier campuses, through invitation or word of mouth. (No students, nobody under 18 years old). [Updated on 9/11/2007: For Teachers and members of GIIS Management: We do not know for certain if GIIS/GIF restricts your participation, but we guess that it is so. We do not wish to risk your employment. So, please get clearances from bosses wherever needed, before you join this blog. Please try your best to convince GIIS bosses of the benefit of using modern IT and the role of blogs in modern schools. While we would love to have representation from all parties, we do not mind starting off as just a Parents Forum. --Ed 9/11/2007]. [Update 02/2008: We now suspect that teachers and PSG have been instructed to maintain a closed mind and ignore this blog. If this is really true, it is even more unfortunate - Ed.]

Why should I join as a member of the blog ?
  • So that you can post to this blog. Only members can post.
  • Being a member gives you voice as a customer and as a responsible member of the GIIS community. This forum is the best way to make your voice heard and contribute to the community. And, it is easy. If you already have a G-Mail account, you are almost there.
How to join:
  1. Read through current and past posts to be familiar with the forum. Subscribe to the e-mail notification feed (see above) to remain updated on new posts.
  2. Read and understand the rules that all posting members have agreed to. (If you disagree with any of the rules, you can tell us why. We want to be reasonable and fair).
  3. Sign up for a GMail or Google Account. (If you already have a GMail account, or if you have a Blogger ID on blogger.com, then you are all set... just go to the next step).
  4. Write an email request to be added to the community. Proceed as follows:
    1. Click here to compose email (NOTE: NEW email ID).
    2. Be sure to include your GMail ID [Google Account email ID /Blogger email ID] in the body of the message.
    3. Send the email message.
      Please allow us some time to respond, as we may process these only once a week.
Thank you.

[If you face any problems joining or subscribing, post a comment under this. We will try our best to help]


These are the rules we all agree to abide by. All new members are expected to accept these rules when they join.

  • Not Anonymous: This community does not allow anonymous posting. But... wait ! We are not asking for your IC number or janam kundali ! All you need is your own individual Blogger profile, which of course is free of $ cost.
  • Open: The community is open and deliberates in public view (because sunlight is the best disinfectant).
  • Offensive Posts: All posts that are determined to be "offensive" should/will either be rectified or be subject to deletion within reasonable time frame. Any member can cite a post for being offensive, but should clearly identify the offensive parts, and explain why it is offensive, unless obvious. (All this requires non-anonymity. We do not want to delete postings that may have offensive parts but may be otherwise valuable). To prevent extreme abuse of this provision, Parents Caucus will post the details of the judgement process itself in such cases, in the interests of full transparency. Personal attacks will not be tolerated.
  • Privacy Policy: Just as we value our own privacy, we value that of other individuals too: including teachers, Principals (ex-teachers and ex-Principals included), members of GIIS and GIF management, etc. Postings which needlessly violate privacy of individuals should/will be brought to notice and rectified or deleted. However, privacy of the individual will be a second priority, where it conflicts with the good of the community and the goal of making GIIS better.
  • Teachers' Names: (added 10 April 2008). Please do not post the good teachers' names as GIIS ends up losing them to rival schools which are on the lookout for the best teachers. Instead, for example, mention: 'English Teacher of Std 2A East Coast' if you have appreciative comments about the teacher.
  • Accountability: You alone are accountable for your posts/comments.