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Singapore eases up on school testing to foster creativity

World's top exam performer seeks to boost competitiveness in information economy

A student assembles a model airplane at a secondary school in Singapore.   © Reuters

SINGAPORE -- A place known for its high standards of education, Singapore is now shifting to a more relaxed style at the primary and secondary levels, hoping to nurture people who can flexibly adapt themselves to a changing economy.

The city-state has six years of compulsory primary education, followed by four-year secondary. Based on the results of the exam at the end of primary school, students are placed on one of three secondary education paths. This is a crucial factor in determining their future -- lower-streamed students face more hurdles and challenges getting into local universities.

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