Singapore

Brand new Fern Green Primary welcomes its first batch of P1 students

38,000 pupils enrol in Primary 1 this year, including 240 in Fern Green Primary School

Madam Rizalia Abdul Rahim and her daughter Qalesya Alya woke up early yesterday for their first day in school - she as a teacher on a new posting, and Qalesya as a Primary 1 pupil in the same school.

Adding to the excitement was that their school - Fern Green Primary School - was starting classes for the first time.

Qalesya belongs to the first batch of 240 Primary 1 pupils at the school in Fernvale Link. It was the only new primary school to open in Singapore yesterday.

The cohort is among 38,000 pupils who are enrolled in Primary 1 this year, said the Ministry of Education.

TRANSFERRED

Madam Rizalia, 35, who teaches the Malay language, was transferred to the new school in Sengkang from White Sands Primary School in Pasir Ris, where she taught for 13 years.

"I initially wanted to enrol Qalesya in Sengkang Green Primary School, which is nearer to my place.

"But I thought it would be interesting to enrol her in a pioneer batch, where a lot of new ideas can be injected," said Madam Rizalia, who will not be teaching her daughter's class.

Qalesya, who counts English, Malay and art as her favourite subjects, said: "In school, I will call her Madam Rizalia."

The pupils will spend the first week getting to know their new classmates and settling into the new school.

School principal May Tang said there will be no formal teaching and the pupils will have activities such as setting their class rules and taking tours of the school compound.

The pupils have only white and green physical education attire.

NO SCHOOL UNIFORM

There will be no school uniform or school song for the first year at least, said Mrs Tang, who was principal of Changkat Primary School for seven years.

She wants the school identity to be formed before the uniform is designed and school song composed with input from staff, parents and pupils.

The school uses an app called Class Dojo to share reports on the pupils with parents, along with photographs showing what goes on in class.

"Young parents are tech savvy... we are leveraging technology to a large extent to engage with them," said Mrs Tang.

Education