Teachers’ Day Message 2014 by DGE Ms Ho Peng

I’m away from MOE on No-Pay Leave and hence isn’t celebrating Teachers’ Day; nonetheless, Happy Teachers’ Day to all teachers out there! 🙂

Teachers’ Day used to be celebrated on 1 September and has been shifted to the last working day of Term 3 with effect from 2013.
Although it was shifted by the ministry to allow teachers to have a long weekend by giving them off on a Friday (instead of losing an extra day off because the day fell during the September term break), I feel like there would be better significance if it was kept to the same date – it’s like your birthday, you can’t shift it to another date, can you?
Oh well, it may just be me because I’m quite a date-person – dates are significant to me…

ANYHOW, here’s the message from DGE Ms Ho Peng for Teachers’ Day and I’m putting it here to remind me of what it means to serve with passion and dedication and that in turn, I will inspire the next generation as our pioneers have inspired me.

From the Desk of the Director-General of Education, Singapore


Dear Fellow Educators,

Teachers’ Day is a special time set aside to honour and appreciate our educators for their dedicated service to our students and to the nation. Next year will be an important milestone for Singapore as we celebrate 50 years of independence. It is timely for us at this important juncture to reflect on our journey thus far and to be grateful for how far our nation has come despite the odds. Our pioneer generations have played a significant role in Singapore’s story, and the successes that we enjoy today are in part due to the legacy left behind by our pioneers.

The pioneering spirit is underpinned by 3Rs: Resourcefulness, Resilience and Responsibility. These values enabled our pioneer educators to overcome the constraints and challenges confronting them. As a teaching fraternity, I urge us to uphold and pass on to our students the timeless values, beliefs and practices of our pioneers. At the same time, let us actively seek ways to adapt and continue to grow so that we are ourselves pioneers in our own right, in a new era, contributing to building up the next generation of teachers and students.

As teachers, we embrace a passion for learning. At the start of our teaching careers, we often follow in the footsteps of our mentors. But the time will come for each of us to come into our own. Eventually, there would come a day where we are able to guide and empower others to do the same so that they carry on the legacy and build on it as well. This is what we should strive towards in the coming years: hold fast to our values, principles and beliefs but also take heart in trying out new ways of learning and teaching. It is only when we are continually seeking improvement that we can continue to grow from strength to strength as a teaching fraternity.

Thank you, colleagues for the purposeful work you do. I encourage you to continue on this meaningful journey, upholding the ethos of the teaching profession and staying true to the spirit and values exemplified by our pioneer generation. May we continue to be an inspiration to others just as our pioneers have been an inspiration to us.

Light the flame and pass on the torch. This is how we can ensure our profession remains strong.

I wish you all a Happy Teachers’ Day.

Yours in the service of education,
Ho Peng (Ms)
Director-General of Education

In case there are any teachers out there who are burnt out and feel like quitting… Remember, you are so much more than just a teacher:
You are so much more than a teacher...
It takes a big heart to help shape little minds.

“God understood our thirst for knowledge, and our need to be led by someone wiser;
He needed a heart of compassion, of encouragement, and patience;
Someone who would accept the challenge regardless of the opposition;
Someone who could see potential and believe in the best in others . . .
So He made Teachers.”-Author Unkown


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