PAP Minister Tan Chuan Jin: Education subsidies is not a blank cheque

Speaking in the latest government PR exercise, the Singapore Conversation, Minister of Manpower Tan Chuan Jin audaciously stated that the PAP government is not able to financially support every option that furthers Singaporeans’ education. How did the PAP Minister came out with such a ridiculous claim when Education Expenditures as a percentage of GDP for Singapore in the world is a lowly 132 out of 173 countries.

According to the US’s CIA factbook [Source], Singapore spends only 3.3% of its GDP on Education. This miserable figure pales in comparison to Malaysia and South Korea at 5.1%. Millionaire Minister Tan Chuan Jin could be so shamelessly stating the opposite when his government has barely done enough for Singaporeans.

In Singapore, up to 20% of the locally subsidized universities are foreign students. Singaporean taxes are used to subsidies foreign students and for most of them on scholarships, with a monthly paycheck, free accommodation, free tuition fees and even guaranteed employment for the first 3 years after graduation. The PAP government has also always deliberately avoided giving a breakdown of the Ministry of Education’s Budget so Singaporeans will not know how many millions are given to foreign students each year.

Singaporean polytechnic and JC graduates have very low chances of getting into a government subsidized university because the PAP refuse to build more universities as they do not want more Singaporeans to be tertiary-educated. Huge investments have been made in ITEs and Polytechnics to contain Singaporeans’ education needs, but little or nothing has been spent on university education for Singaporeans.

Every year, only 10% of the polytechnic graduates and 70% of the JC graduates make it to a local university. The remaining ones pursuing a degree attend foreign universities based in Singapore. A private degree cost between $26,000 to $32,000, to which the PAP government gave ZERO subsidies to Singaporeans. Many Singaporean students landed themselves in hefty education debt as a result, and yet have to compete with foreigners with dubious degrees in the labor market.

By The Real Singapore


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