SkillsFuture is a continued training. It is far from the objective of lifelong learning. The PAP is smart in process engineering and SkillsFuture is the latest innovative training guide with additional government funding.
Now, every Singaporean above 25 will have a credit of $500 (in 2016) in their SkillsFuture Credit. It is a job skill training:
“The credit can be used for work-skills related courses supported by public agencies.”
SkillsFuture programs, from schools to individual to employers, the funding and support are administrated and initialed by public agencies. It is a guided tour, prearranged, pre-planned process of skill training.
Training is different from learning. SkillsFuture cannot run away from skills, job training, employment enrichment, and study improvement, etc. It has a very high content of value for money, productivity for training, and innovation for process engineering. Unfortunately, the word ‘skill’ - no matter past, present and future, is job related, root trained, and memory enhanced.
Skill is a mindset training and obedient reinforcement. Passion learning, lifelong learning and non-skill learning are not the key elements here.
We have edusave for students to enrich their study and guided overseas trips. These are all approved courses and trips by the Ministry of Education. In term of organisation and planning, these are well planned and trained. It is an innovative process by adding more programs, improving the contents and updating the teaching materials. Students, especially older students can learn more if they can break this process. For example, they are allowed to organise their own tours and backpack their own bags in a small group without strict supervision. After the trip, they can then submit a group report as their social studies/project work for their ‘O’ or ‘A’ level. Students will learn more about Bangkok, Manila, Jakarta and Kuala Lumpur than a guided tour funded by edusave.
Similarly, public agencies can only fund approved courses and training programs. The PAP government has already pre-approved these ‘useful’ and innovative job related trainings. They cannot go beyond the guideline. Employees need to mark their attendance so that employers can get the funding grants. This is innovation not creativity. In fact, this is a kind of group thinking. Employees attend the same training, go through the same process and upgrade their skills without learning creatively.
SkillsFuture is an update of the PAP model of economic development. It is another way of PAP group thinking in advanced level. It is another systematic organised PAP social engineering. If you disagree, your SkillsFuture Credit remains there, like medisave, it can only be used for approved medical procedures and treatments.
The most SkillsFuture can achieve is solving the innovation process engineering problems of Singapore. Our economy still needs people providing ‘standard operating procedures’ services. Our banking, tourism, manufacturing, medical, and even legal sectors need SOP workforce. WDA and other public agencies are good at approving and recognising training courses under the SkillsFuture framework.
In fact, the PAP is a SOP party. They organise Singapore in a system that everything is under their control, from mainstream media, preschool education, university places to general election. Unfortunately, SOP has its weakness and it can only help the PAP 50 years.
Creativity is the missing point in SkillsFuture. It depends too much on SOP, so do the PAP.
Free Internet access, free press and media, and free political defamation will bring more creativity to Singapore than the innovative-only SOP SkillsFuture.
In the information age, news reporting is no more a SOP editorial board decision. News reporting and coverage have to consider social media, bloggers, Facebook, twitters, weibo, feedback, forums, etc. Major newspaper, like the New York Times, has now given less power to editorial board but more considerations to social media.
However, SkillsFuture is just another SOP product of the PAP. And the SPH and MediaCorp still prefer to follow the SOP of the PAP. No wonder Singapore press ranking is at the third world level with no creative reporting.
If you visit skillsfuture.sg, you will find the programs will only be introduced or implemented in 2016. SkillsFuture is still waiting for the SOP of the PAP and perhaps, it is part of the PAP’s general election SOP.