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Thread: Singapore Also Can
07-29-2013, 11:20 PM #7311
Rare sea turtle spotted on beach at East Coast Park
Published on Jul 30, 2013
The turtle - believed to be a hawksbill - was spotted near East Coast Lagoon Food Centre on July 21. It heaved itself back into the sea about an hour later, without laying any eggs. Hawksbills and green turtles are the two species most commonly sighted here, and both are critically endangered. -- PHOTO: DAVID TAN
By Grace Chua
When biology undergraduate David Tan got a call telling him that a sea turtle had been spotted at East Coast Park, he found himself wrestling with two conflicting impulses.
While he wanted a rare glimpse of the endangered creature laying its eggs, he was also wary of disturbing it.
"Excitement got the better of me," said the 24-year-old. After hearing of the sighting from a friend earlier this month, he headed straight to the spot, near East Coast Lagoon Food Centre.
When he arrived after midnight, the keen naturalist saw the creature being watched from a safe distance by several other people, most of whom were National Parks Board (NParks) staff.
07-31-2013, 12:16 AM #7312
S'pore team win International Young Physicists tournament
By Victoria JenPOSTED: 30 Jul 2013 8:15 PM
The team of five students, aged between 16 and 17, beat 25 other teams from around the world to clinch the gold medal in the competition, also known as the "Physics World Cup."
TAIPEI: A Singapore team has won this year's International Young Physicists' Tournament held in Taiwan.
This is the second time that Singapore has clinched the gold medal in the competition, also known as the "Physics World Cup."
The team of five students, aged between 16 and 17, beat 25 other teams from around the world.
Singapore last won the gold medal in 2010.
This is the fifth year that Singapore has taken part in the competition,
Singapore's team coach Lee Jie Liang said: "I think they are a very committed bunch with all the time that they put into this competition. They never complained. When they know they need to conduct experiment or stay longer hours in the lab, they are always happy to do so."
President Ma Ying-jeou also met with the Singapore team at the presidential office.
Channel NewsAsia has been following the Singapore team's preparations for the competition and a documentary will be aired on August 22.
07-31-2013, 02:32 AM #7313
New PE syllabus from 2014; secondary school students to learn at least 3 recreational
Published on Jul 31, 2013
A netball game in action at Ang Mo Kio Secondary School. The Education Ministry will roll out a new physical education (PE) syllabus from next year. -- FILE PHOTO: ANG MO KIO SECONDARY
By Stacey Chia
The Education Ministry will roll out a new physical education (PE) syllabus from next year.
As part of the new syllabus all students will have to take part in outdoor education and secondary school students will learn at least three recreational sports so that they can take part in intra-school competitions. Health education lessons will also be integrated into PE lessons at all levels.
Primary 1 and 2, as well as Secondary 1 and 2 students, will be the first to experience the new syllabus next year.
The new syllabus was announced by Education Minister Heng Swee Keat at the second Physical and Sports Education Conference on Wednesday. Mr Heng said that the new syllabus aims to equip students with the ability to engage in a wide range of physical activities and sports. He said that some of the changes are a result of feedback received from Our Singapore Conversation sessions. Workshops will be held to help schools teach the new syllabus.
07-31-2013, 03:11 AM #7314
S’pore swimmer Schooling sets national 200m fly record
By Tan Yo-Hinn -
3 hours 51 min ago
SINGAPORE -- United States-based swimmer Joseph Schooling has set a national record for the men’s 200m butterfly.
The 18-year-old Singaporean clocked 1min 56.27secs in the event’s first semi-final at the FINA World Swimming Championship in Barcelona on Tuesday (July 30, early Wednesday morning, Singapore time).
It bettered the previous mark of 1:56.67 which he set at the 2011 South-east Asian (SEA) Games in Indonesia.
However, it was not enough for him to qualify for the final today after he was ranked 10th overall, with Tom Luchsinger of the United States taking the eighth and final berth in 1:56.10.
South African Chad Le Clos, who won the event at last year’s London Olympics, is the fastest qualifier for today’s final after posting a 1:55.33.
07-31-2013, 04:25 AM #7315
16 applications from singles for every two-room flat on offer
Published on Jul 31, 2013
HDB Build-To-Order (BTO) flats under construction at Sengkang Central. Barely a day after the latest BTO launch and there were already about 16 applications from singles for every two-room flat on offer. -- ST FILE PHOTO: SEAH KWANG PENG
By Daryl Chin
Barely a day after the latest Build-To-Order (BTO) launch and there were already about 16 applications from singles for every two-room flat on offer.
The latest figures, posted on the Housing Board's website at 2pm on Wednesday, showed that the 231 units in Sengkang were more popular than the units on offer in Yishun.
A total of 519 two-room flats were launched with up to a third being set aside specifically for singles. This is the first time singles are able to bid for brand new public flats. Previously they were restricted to the resale market.
07-31-2013, 11:26 PM #7316
Raffles Institution wins first place in Straits Times Big Quiz again
Published on Jul 31, 2013
By Sheryl Quek
It was a 30-point "sabo" that gave Raffles Institution (RI) the edge it needed to clinch the championship in The Big Quiz - for the second time in a row.
In the finals of The Straits Times-Ministry of Education National Current Affairs Quiz, the NYJC team had directed its question to RI using its "Sabo King" card, as part of its strategy. RI correctly answered this question: Which is the first woman author to win the Man Booker Prize twice? The answer: Hilary Mantel.
The team held on to its lead, eventually scoring 210 points to beat Hwa Chong Institution, which scored 180 points, for first place. After weeks of intense competition, RI won $5,000 and a trophy in the second edition of The Big Quiz. The finals were held at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel on Wednesday. Third place went to River Valley High School while Nanyang Junior College came in fourth.
The event was organised by The Straits Times and the Ministry of Education. It was sponsored by Singapore Press Holdings Foundation and innovation partner Shell. The guest-of-honour was Senior Minister of State (law and education) Ms Indranee Rajah.
The participating teams take a photo with The Straits Times associate editor Sumiko Tan and guest-of-honour Senior Minister of State (law and education) Ms Indranee Rajah after the finals of The Straits Times-Ministry of Education National Current Affairs Quiz on Wednesday, July 31, 2013. It was a 30-point "sabo" that gave Raffles Institution the edge it needed to clinch the championship in The Big Quiz - for the second time in a row. -- ST PHOTO: KEVIN LIM
07-31-2013, 11:38 PM #7317
Swimming: Schooling sets new 200m IM national mark at the World Championships
Published on Jul 31, 2013
Singapore's Joseph Schooling competes in the heats of the men's 200m butterfly swimming event in the Fina World Championships in Barcelona on Tuesday, July 30, 2013. Schooling became the first Singaporean to go below the two-minute barrier in the 200m individual medley, when he clocked 1min 59.99sec at the World Championships in Barcelona, on Wednesday, July 31, 2013, breaking his own national record of 2:00.77. -- PHOTO: AFP
By Chan U-Gene
SINGAPORE swimmer Joseph Schooling became the first Singaporean to go below the two-minute barrier in the 200m individual medley, when he clocked 1min 59.99sec at the World Championships in Barcelona, on Wednesday, breaking his own national record of 2:00.77.
He also took the last slot in tonight's semi-finals in 16th position. The fastest qualifier was Hungarian Laszlo Cseh in 1:57.70.
Meanwhile, Danny Yeo came close to his own national record of 50.51 seconds in the 100m freestyle, when he clocked 50.92 to finish 40th out of 86 swimmers. Quah Ting Wen also missed out on the semi-finals. Her time of 2:14.10 in the women's 200m butterfly put her 21st out of 26 competitors.
Singapore's Joseph Schooling qualifies for 200m men's butterfly semis
Published on Jul 30, 2013
Singaporean swimmer Joseph Schooling competes in the men's 200m butterfly heat of the London Olympics in London on July 30, 2012. Schooling qualified for the semi-finals of the men's 200m butterfly at the Fina World Championships in Barcelona on Tuesday, July 30, 2013. -- ST FILE PHOTO: MUGILAN RAJASEGERAN
By Fabius Chen
Singapore swimmer Joseph Schooling qualified for the semi-finals of the men's 200m butterfly at the Fina World Championships in Barcelona on Tuesday.
The 18-year-old clocked 1min 57.23sec to rank 14th out of the 35-strong field.
He will take to the pool again in the semi-finals early Wednesday morning (Singapore time).
Meanwhile, Quah Ting Wen failed in her bid to reach the semi-finals of the women's 200m freestyle. The Singaporean's time of 2min 2.57sec saw her rank 29th out of 45 swimmers.
Last edited by Loh; 07-31-2013 at 11:44 PM.
07-31-2013, 11:54 PM #7318
Swimming: No final for Schooling
Schooling has set new national records in the 200m butterfly and 200m individual medley. Photo: Getty Images
Hopes dashed after 18-year-old eventually finished last out of 16 swimmers with a semi-final time of 2min 00.49sec
By Low Lin Fhoong
5 hours 19 min ago
SINGAPORE - Despite a lung-bursting sprint to the finish, national swimmer Joseph Schooling's dream of competing in the FINA World Championship's men's 200m individual medley final alongside 2012 Olympics silver and bronze medallists Ryan Lochte and Hungary's Laszlo Cseh was dashed early Thursday morning.
Hopes had been high for the 18-year-old to replicate his record-breaking performance of 1min 59.99sec from yesterday's (July 31) heats, but Schooling eventually finished last out of 16 swimmers with a semi-final time of 2min 00.49sec.
Still, there is no denying that the teenager has been one of the Republic's best performers at the world meet after setting new national records in the 200m IM and 200m butterfly in the space of 15 hours.
His feats mean that he is on course to meet his target of setting personal best times for all the four events he is contesting in his World Championships debut.
Joseph's new national record during his 200m IM heat also makes him the first Singaporean to go below the two-minute mark for the event.
He had set the previous national mark of 2:00.77 in May at the Arena Grand Prix in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Schooling, who will start his final year at Bolles School in Jacksonville following the world championships, will compete in his final event, the men’s 100m butterfly heats, at the Palau Sant Jordi sporting arena tomorrow.
Singapore’s other swimmers failed to make it out of the heats in their respective events with Tao Li clocking 28.90secs in the 50m backstroke to finish 24th out of 51 athletes.
08-01-2013, 02:32 AM #7319
Programme to transform SMEs become global players
WDA’s 360 Productivity Initiative launched today aims to help about 700 local enterprises boost economic competitiveness
16 min 43 sec ago
SINGAPORE — A new initiative has been launched to help small and medium enterprises become globally competitive companies by enhancing their productivity.
The 360 Productivity initiative is being spearheaded by the Workforce Development Agency, the Employment and Employability Institute and the Human Capital Singapore. It was launched by Minister of State for Manpower, Dr Amy Khor, today (Aug 1).
The WDA and Human Capital Singapore says some 700 local enterprises will stand to benefit from the scheme, which is targeted at these companies to explore and utilise productivity from every angle there by boosting their economic competitiveness amidst a tight labour market.
It is an holistic effort that comprises an annual productivity event, a series of master classes and eight productivity practice sessions. The master class will bring in internationally renowned thought leaders to share their latest thinking and trends about productivity.
During productivity practice sessions, managers will come together to share and learn productivity initiatives. There will also be a productivity award for breakthroughs so as to recognise and commend companies for their efforts directed at raising their productivity.
Envoys from the Enterprise Support Scheme or ETS were also appointed this morning.
These envoys are senior management representatives who will help champion capability development through the continuing education and training programmes and the adoption of the workforce skills qualifications programmes.
The envoys will help promote the uptake of the enterprise support scheme within their industry sectors through referrals and the sharing of experiences.
The scheme came into effect on April 1 this year. It helps companies implement progressive human resource systems and enhances in-house training capabilities to help raise skills and productivity of workers Since 20 June this year, six organisations have signed up for the scheme. CHANNEL NEWSASIA
08-01-2013, 02:35 AM #7320
STTA ties up with Liverpool university for players’ studies
Retired national table tennis players will be able to pursue degrees at University of Liverpool under MoU signed today
- By Gerard Wong
32 min 9 sec ago
SINGAPORE — National table tennis players can now choose to further their studies at the University of Liverpool after they retire from the sport.
The Singapore Table Tennis Association today (Aug 1) inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the British educational institution, which now becomes the latest university to partner the national sports body after Singapore’s own Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and China’s Beijing University.
- By Gerard Wong
08-01-2013, 02:54 AM #7321
STTA , Grace Shine extend sponsorship deal
Photo: Adelene Wong
Property investment firm’s new three-year deal with table tennis association worth S$300,000 kicks in on Dec 1
By Adelene Wong
SINGAPORE — Property investment company Grace Shine has extended its sponsorship with the Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA), the nationals sports association announced today (July 26).
The three-year sponsorship agreement is worth S$300,000 and will commence from Dec 1.
The STTA said this will benefit their sports development and sports excellence plans.
08-01-2013, 02:57 AM #7322
Ex-World Bank President Zoellick joins Temasek board of directors
Former World Bank President Robert Zoellick.
5 hours 25 min ago
SINGAPORE — Temasek Holdings has announced the appointment of former World Bank President Robert Zoellick to its board of directors
The appointment will come into effect from Aug 15.
“With a distinguished career which spans academia, government, politics and business, Mr Zoellick, 60, brings with him extensive international experience as well as an in-depth knowledge of the global economy and international finance,” Temasek said in a press release this morning.
Mr Zoellick, who was the President of the World Bank from July 2007 until June last year, has also served the United States Government in various roles, including as the US Trade Representative (2001-2005) and Deputy Secretary of State (2005-2006) under President George W Bush.
During his tenure as Trade Representative, the US signed its Free Trade Agreement with Singapore, as well as with 11 other countries.
“We are very pleased that Bob has accepted our invitation to join the Temasek Board. He brings a wealth of experience in international business, diplomacy and finance that will be both welcome and valuable on our Board,” said Mr Lim Boon Heng, who took his place as Chairman of Temasek today following the retirement of Mr S Dhanabalan.
“His appointment to our Board also comes at an opportune time, as Temasek sets out to establish its first US office in the near future. Bob’s insights will be especially helpful as we continue to explore opportunities in the US, Europe and also in the various growth markets.”
Said Mr Zoellick, according to the Temasek press release: “I have a high regard for Singapore, and welcome its contribution to international business, finance and trade.
“Over the years, I have also come to know Temasek well, and have followed its growing reputation as a well-regarded international investor. Its commitment to strong corporate governance principles is very important to set the tone in international investing. I look forward to being part of a very strong team as I join the Temasek Board.”
The other members of the board are Chairman Lim Boon Heng, Executive Director and CEO Ho Ching, Mr Cheng Wai Keung, Mr Goh Yew Lin, Mr Kua Hong Pak, Mr Michael Lien, Mr Teo Ming Kian, Mr Marcus Wallenberg and Mr Lucien Wong.
08-01-2013, 11:34 PM #7323
S'pore students excel at international science olympiads
01 Aug 2013 7:37 PM
Singapore students have performed well at the International Olympiads for Biology, Chemistry, Informatics, Mathematics and Physics -- altogether, they obtained 12 gold, nine silver and two bronze medals.
SINGAPORE: Singapore students have performed well at the International Olympiads for Biology, Chemistry, Informatics, Mathematics and Physics -- altogether, they obtained 12 gold, nine silver and two bronze medals.
The Ministry of Education (MOE) said they also did well at the 26th International Young Physicists' Tournament in July. They clinched the tournament and were awarded the gold medal.
At the 24th International Biology Olympiad held in Bern, Switzerland, the Singapore team obtained four gold medals and placed 2nd out of 62 countries. The gold medallists are Cheong Yi Loong Benny, Yap Chun Hian John, Zhao Xing Liang from Hwa Chong Institution, and Stanley Quek Tee Kai from NUS High School of Mathematics and Science.
At the 45th International Chemistry Olympiad in Moscow Russia, the Singapore team received three gold medals and one bronze medal, with Singapore placed 4th out of 73 countries. The gold medallists are Chua Anlong of NUS High School of Mathematics and Science, Cao Yuxin and Lin Yongjie of Raffles Institution. The bronze medallist is Fang Haitian of Raffles Institution.
The Singapore team received three silver medals and one bronze medal at the 25th International Olympiad in Informatics held in Brisbane, Australia. Singapore was placed joint 17th with Australia out of 77 countries.
The silver medallists are Ranald Lam Yun Shao of Raffles Institution, Gan Wei Liang and Mark Theng Kwang Hui of Hwa Chong Institution; and the bronze medalist is Bernard Teo Zhi Yi from Hwa Chong Institution.
At the 44th International Physics Olympiad in Copenhagen, Denmark, the Singapore team obtained four gold medals and one silver medal, with Singapore placing 3rd out of 83 countries.
The gold medallists are Daniel Mark Keat Kay of Raffles Institution (Junior College), and Lim Jeck, Sean Seet Xiang En and Tan Wei Liang Byorn of NUS High School of Mathematics and Science. The silver medallist is Ashwin Venkidachalam from Raffles Institution (Junior College).
MOE said all the students in the Biology, Chemistry and Physics Olympiads had participated in the international competitions for the first time.
08-04-2013, 11:01 PM #7324
Schools moving into high-tech gear
Kids as young as nine learn 3-D modelling, app development, programming
Published on Aug 05, 2013
(From left) Radin Mas Primary School pupils Keison Tan, Zachary Wah, Thea Huan, Tan Rui Yang and Mohamad Hafeez with their models from a 3-D printing workshop. Schools are introducing cutting-edge technology to equip pupils with 21st century skills. -- ST PHOTO: DESMOND FOO
By Kash Cheong
Some learn computer programming while others apply cutting-edge techniques such as 3-D printing.
Not bad, considering they are all just schoolchildren.
Welcome to the increasingly advanced world of IT lessons, as schools introduce hot new technologies to prepare young people for a tech-heavy future.
Children themselves are also growing more interested as the subject sheds its image as a geeky pursuit for bespectacled nerds.
NEW CAREER OPTIONS
By starting them young, we want to open new career pathways in tech... They can be game designers, even technopreneurs.
- Mr Yeo Zhong Wei, head of IT at Ngee Ann Secondary
08-04-2013, 11:07 PM #7325
Cinemas go high-tech to tackle labour shortage
Computers can do jobs like screen the movie, sell and check tickets
Published on Aug 05, 2013
NEW METHOD: Cathay Organisation CEO Suhaimi Rafdi showing how the cinema experience – lights, curtains and movie projection – can all be controlled remotely from a laptop. -- ST PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN
OLD METHOD: The film projection room at Cathay Cineleisure. Previously, each theatre hall needed one projectionist to screen the movie. But the new digital system means this is no longer necessary. -- ST PHOTOS: ALPHONSUS CHERN
By Janice Heng
Most moviegoers spare little thought for the existence of the film projectionist. Now, they might be justified in doing so - for he may not exist at all.
From projection rooms without projectionists, to automatic gates which check your tickets, cineplexes are finding high-tech ways to tackle the labour crunch.
Dimming the theatre lights, drawing the curtains back from the screen and starting the movie can all be done at the touch of a button - or even less.
Cathay Cineplex Cineleisure Orchard's computer system lets all this be scheduled in advance.
We embarked on this to reduce our reliance on manpower... This means we will be less reliant on labour - by 19 people - for day-to-day operations.
- Cathay Organisation chief executive officer Suhaimi Rafdi, on how the new system frees projectionists for front-line jobs
08-04-2013, 11:20 PM #7326
Remaining dragon kilns in Singapore given new breath of life
Published on Aug 03, 2013
The Thow Kwang dragon kiln at Lorong Tawas, off Jalan Bahar. Thow Kwang Industry and Focus Ceramic Services which were to operate till December 2014 and January 2015 respectively, will have new tenancies for an initial term of three years. -- ST FILE PHOTO: CAROLINE CHIA
By Melody Zaccheus
Singapore's two remaining dragon kilns have been given a new breath of life after their tenancies were extended by the Government on Saturday.
Thow Kwang Industry and Focus Ceramic Services which were to operate till December 2014 and January 2015 respectively, will have new tenancies for an initial term of three years. This will be renewable for another two terms of three years each.
Both the Thow Kwang Industry and Focus Ceramic Services are located at 85 and 97L Lorong Tawas respectively. For the last 20 years, their fates were unclear as there are plans for an eco-friendly park in the area.
The National Heritage Board (NHB) which had assessed the heritage value of the two dragon kilns since May, had championed for the tenure extension.
08-04-2013, 11:55 PM #7327
More help for pioneer generation soon: Tharman
48th National Day Celebration at Taman Jurong with Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam. Photo: Ernest Chua
Govt to announce measures to offset hospitalisation, outpatient, nursing home bills for this ‘special group’
- By NG JING YNG
7 hours 36 min ago
SINGAPORE — The Government will be announcing measures “soon” to help the pioneer generation of Singaporeans who were unable to reap the full benefits of Singapore’s economic rise during their working life.
Specifically, the authorities will be looking to alleviate the healthcare costs in “all aspects” — including hospitalisation, outpatient and nursing home bills — for this “very special group”, said Deputy Prime Minister Tharman Shanmugaratnam yesterday in his speech at the National Day celebrations at Taman Jurong.
“We are all working very hard on this and soon we will be making some announcements,” he said.
Mr Tharman, who is also Finance Minister, noted this group of Singaporeans did not manage to accumulate much savings in their Central Provident Fund because their salaries were relatively low.
“Now when they retire, they find the cost of living is high ... The younger generation now has higher pay so we want to do more to help the older Singaporeans, especially with healthcare costs,” said Mr Tharman, adding that Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has made it “very clear” that the Government must do more to help older Singaporeans.
Mr Tharman said the pioneer generation had “worked very hard” to support and defend the country. “Now we will defend them as they retire and as they grow older,” he said. “We owe it to them and we want to do something special for this group of Singaporeans.”
Political watchers expect the National Day Rally on Aug 18 to be a possible platform for the announcements.
Tanjong Pagar GRC Member of Parliament (MP) Chia Shi-Lu, who sits on the Government Parliamentary Committee (GPC) for Health, shared that one of the things on the cards is a more streamlined process for older Singaporeans to receive assistance for healthcare costs.
He noted that Singaporeans in the pioneer generation are disadvantaged because the current healthcare financing framework — which is undergoing a review — was not in place during their economically active years.
To signal that this group deserves special recognition, Dr Chia added that the Ministry of Health is looking into greater differentiation between help with healthcare costs for the pioneer generation vis a vis other Singaporeans.
Nee Soon GRC MP Patrick Tay, who also sits on the Health GPC, agreed with the need to do more for this group. The escalating healthcare costs have been accentuated by a higher life expectancy and shrinking family sizes, which result in less support for the elderly, he said.
Citing the need to do more for two other groups of Singaporeans — children and workers — Mr Tharman reiterated the importance of providing opportunities for them to move up the socio-economic ladder. Children whose families are less well-off must be given more help, he said.
On workers, he said employers ought to improve jobs by investing in equipment and grow their businesses without having to hire more people.
He added that, over the next few years, the Government will put “a lot of emphasis” on ensuring every Singaporean can “move up the ladder in every job”.
“The Government will do more, employers must do more and every worker must also put in the effort to improve, learn more, do well on the job,” he said.
Speaking to reporters later, Mr Tharman urged Singaporeans to exercise “collective responsibility” and help those “who have less do well so that we can all progress”.
- By NG JING YNG
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