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    Jun 19, 2015

    Oasis of learning in Punggol to fill young minds

    THREE new primary schools will open in Punggol next year to help meet the growing demand in the area.

    The schools - Oasis Primary in Edgefield Plains, Punggol Cove Primary in Sumang Walk and Waterway Primary in Punggol Drive - will be able to take in 210 pupils each.

    They are located near a number of housing projects. Waterway Primary, for instance, is located near the Waterway Sunbeam and Waterway Sunray; the latter is still under construction.

    The new schools will bring the total number of primary schools in Punggol to nine.

    Punggol has seen rapid development in recent years and, with many young families moving there, demand for school places has grown.

    To bring the schools up to speed, the Education Ministry has appointed veteran educators to lead them.

    Ong-Chew Lu See, the current principal of Naval Base Primary in Yishun, will head Oasis Primary. Opera Estate Primary's principal, Dennis Yap Swee Beng, will helm Punggol Cove Primary while Wee-Kwan Liam, principal of Xingnan Primary, will head Waterway Primary.

    Mrs Ong-Chew, 48, said developing leadership skills in pupils is an area she wants to focus on.

    "Apart from academic results, imbuing the right values in the pupils is important," she said.

    The addition of the three schools will lift the total number of primary schools in Singapore back to 190. Last year, six primary schools merged into three due to falling enrolment.

    Parents can register their children in Oasis Primary, Punggol Cove Primary and Waterway Primary at Horizon Primary, Punggol View Primary and Greendale Primary respectively next month.

    Punggol resident Andy Lee, 40, plans to register his daughter in Mee Toh School, an existing school in the area. "Distance is very important, but I also hope the school will have a school-based childcare centre."

    Primary 1 registration will start on July 2 and end on August 27. But registration for the three new schools will begin from Phase 2B, as the first few phases are not applicable to a new school.

    The earlier Phase 1 and Phase 2A start on July 2 and July 7 respectively and are for siblings of current and former pupils of a school, or for children whose parents attended the school.

    Phase 2B starts on July 20 and is for children whose parents have volunteered in schools, have links to churches or clan associations, or are active community members. Phase 2C, for those with no links to schools, starts July 29.

    All primary schools will open for registration from 8am to 11am and from 2.30pm to 4.30pm from Mondays to Fridays during the registration period.

    More information on primary school registration can be found at