I’ve been drowning in badly written essays for the last two weeks, and now that I have a viral fever, it really feels like I’m in hell. What is wrong with all of you? Apart from a few saving graces, none of you know anything about Singapore culture. The ignorance is staggering. And what is with all the snide comments about Indians? I have a couple of people who write that Indians paint decorative patterns outside their doors, and yet they (our speech writers) show racial tolerance by ignoring the designs even if they do not enjoy them. I mean- who cares if you enjoy them or not? Why does everything have to be about you? Another smart alec writes about how Indians use smelly oil on their hair. Do you honestly think this is going to impress your audience? If anything, you are proving beyond the shadow of a doubt what is suspected about Singaporeans- that we are a narrow-minded and judgemental lot, and the farther away people stay from our country, the better. Yet another writes about how she does not criticize Indians for eating with their hands. Again, who cares whether you criticize or not? Grow up people, and learn to see beyond your noses. There is a whole world of people out there who are interested in cultures beyond yours, believe it or not. What you choose to focus on says a lot about your maturity (or lack thereof) and you need to learn to hide your ugly side from the public.
From a language point of view marking the scripts is even more maddening. Some of you took great pleasure in wasting time during the lessons, expecting to be entertained. Well, this is the result: horrendous grammar, lousy expression and very clumsy phrasing. You write like you are barely literate. Details will be given in the marker’s report that I will distribute to you when I return your scripts.
For those of you who have been paying attention in class, did your best in the exam, and genuinely try to meet my expectations in every way, I thank you. Your scripts lift my spirits and make me believe that there is some hope after all. We will work together to ensure your A1 grade for the ‘O’ levels.
The rest of you still have time to redeem yourselves. It is going to require a complete overhaul. Success starts with the right attitude. If you never have that, you will never amount to anything.