TL;DR – MOE awards scholarships to promising students from ASEAN countries, China and India.
The Ministry of Education, in a Facebook post on 6 December, has refuted false allegations circulating on social media which accuses the ministry of recruiting only students from India through scholarships.
The ministry said that it provides a “wide range” of scholarships and financial aid predominantly to Singaporeans, while a “small number” of scholarships were awarded to promising young international students from ASEAN countries, China and India.
In the post, MOE clarified that international students on scholarships only make up 0.9% of Singapore’s secondary and pre-university students.
And out of this group of students, only 0.7% of them are from India.
In other words, 0.7% of 0.9% – or 1 in 16,000 – are scholarship holders from India.
The ministry also added:
“MOE works with organisations, including A*Star and SIA, to administer some of the scholarships schemes, each targeting a different country. MOE will look into amending the websites, so as not to give the impression that the scholarships only target students from a particular country.”
It seems that MOE’s clarification post came after screenshots and links of A*Star and SIA’s youth scholarships began circulating online:
Additionally, in his usual fashion of politicising every issue he can, opposition party leader Lim Tean very quickly took to his Facebook page to criticize the ministry for “still giving out scholarships to Indian students”, after “already allowing so many Indian families to come into our country under CECA.”
Well, we all know that Lim Tean, even though he’s supposedly a trained lawyer, he appears to have problems with reading and comprehension.
But for the benefit of all beings who bother to read and understand, let us repeat what Professor Tommy Koh has explained before, and why it is incorrect to say that CECA has opened the floodgates to let foreign talents from India to come to Singapore:
“Ceca does not guarantee Indian professionals jobs in Singapore nor preferential treatment over Singaporeans. What Ceca confers is for intra-company transferees and professionals from India to work in Singapore for specified durations, provided that they meet our work-pass qualifying criteria.”