Thank you for visiting the BVSS website and your interest in our school. As the 6th Principal of BVSS, I bring with me 16 years of experience from teaching/leading in secondary schools, a junior college and the Ministry of Education headquarters. As the immediate past Principal, Mr Vasuthevan had articulated, the next lap of BVSS’ journey will be one full of opportunities and new developments. I am humbled and excited to build upon the 33 years of my predecessors’ good work to lead the school to cater to the diverse interests and needs of our students, in the hope of fulfilling our school’s vision for them to be Engaged Learners, Empathetic Citizens and Ethical Advocates. To do this, our mission is to be A Dynamic Institution that Adds Value to All by Valuing Learners, Valuing Learning and Learning Values.
During the 1920s to 1940s, the United States Air Force tried to develop a ‘one-size-fits-all’ fighter plane seat. Engineers spent much time measuring various attributes of existing fighter pilots like height, arm length, hand size and shoulder width, in the hope of arriving at the dimensions of an average fighter pilot.
When the seat for this average fighter pilot was constructed, none of the real fighter pilots fit into it comfortably. Worse still, the rigidity of the seat led to pilot errors and plane crashes. In the 1950s, the Air Force repeated the same process with a much larger population size, hoping to arrive at a more accurate set of dimensions of an average fighter pilot. It took a courageous young scientist, Gilbert Daniels, to prove that there was no such thing as average. From research, he found that none of the existing fighter pilots actually fit into the full set of average dimensions that the Air Force had come up with. In fact, he went as far as to say that “it is virtually impossible to find an average pilot not because of any unique traits in this group but because of the great variability of bodily dimensions” and any system designed to fit an average pilot would doom to fail. This discovery led the Air Force to take a radically different design route, which was to fit the environment to the pilot. Adjustable seats were designed so that pilots could adjust the seats based on their own body size, leading to better performance and flight safety.
The above story aptly describes how it is also impossible to design rigid school programmes to fit an average student. Rather, dynamic programmes need to be customisable in delivery to cater to the interest and needs of our diverse student population, based on the resources available to us.
In Valuing Learners, Positive Education is the approach that BVSS has adopted to develop the individual strengths and personal motivation of students to promote learning. Unlike traditional approaches in which teachers attempt to teach to the average student, Positive Education focuses on the well-being of students through developing tailored goals for each to learn via individual plans to reach their goals, so that they will be motivated to do so.
In Valuing Learning, our dynamic school programmes include the ‘Junior OUtstanding Leaders in Energy for Sustainability (JOULES)’, which is the school’s Applied Learning Programme (ALP) in Clean Energy and Environmental Technology. Our school also promotes Environmental Education to equip our next generation for a resource constrained world through authentic and rich learning environments for students to develop core STEM related skills and be exposed to the role of technology and innovation in sustainable development.
In Learning Values, our school values of Zest, Grit and Gratitude are distinctive additions to the values of Respect, Responsibility, Resilience, Integrity, Care and Harmony (R3ICH) that are taught through the national Character and Citizenship Education syllabus. Both the school and RI3CH values will be developed in students through drama via our Learning for Life Programme (LLP), ‘Living the Values, Learning the Arts’.
Along with my staff, I welcome you as present and future stakeholders of the school – parents, alumni and community partners, to join us in being A Dynamic Institution that Adds Value to All.
Mr Kevin Ang
Bukit View Secondary School