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Raising the bar

THE Council for Private Education (CPE), which regulates the private education sector here, unveiled five broad measures earlier this month aimed at upholding the quality of private education institutions (PEIs) in Singapore.

Employment outcomes

PEIs that offer degree programmes will be required to take part in a yearly survey to track their graduate employment outcomes. The survey will be administered by CPE, with the results showing how each school fared to be published on its website.

Certification

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Private schools that offer degrees or courses that lead directly to degrees must first obtain a four-year EduTrust certification, a quality assurance award. Existing schools that offer such programmes and do not have this award must apply for it by June 2017 and attain it by June 2018.

Entry requirements

Fresh school-leavers joining private schools will also need to meet minimum academic entry requirements. For instance, those applying for degrees must have at least an A-level certificate, the International Baccalaureate diploma or other equivalent pre-university qualifications. They could also hold a polytechnic diploma or a PEI qualification that provides direct entry into a degree programme.

Financial strength

PEIs will require a minimum paid-up capital of S$100,000 with immediate effect. Existing schools will also need to meet a minimum credit rating by June 2017.

Stricter EduTrust criteria

Only PEIs that are registered with CPE for at least a four-year period will be able to apply for EduTrust certification. Currently there are no such restrictions. The EduTrust standards will also focus more on academic processes and student education outcomes. These revised requirements will be released in January 2017 and take effect in June 2017.

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