We used to celebrate Teachers’ Day in Singapore on 1 September yearly. Only in recent years, we celebrate it on the last Friday of Term 3.
Why do we celebrate Teachers’ Day in Singapore?
This day is set to recognise the important role which teachers play in shaping the next generation as they nurture them in knowledge and character building.
Other than the gifts that students would give to teachers such as hand-written cards, red pens, good behaviours, good grade to reflect their work impact on the students, how about sharing with them the co-operative movement that will benefit their lives in Singapore?
Introduction of Teachers’ Co-operatives in Singapore
There are two teachers’ co-operatives in Singapore, namely the Singapore Teachers’ Credit Co-operative Society and Singapore Malay Teachers Multi-Purpose Co-operative Limited for current teachers and staff in employed in schools.
Both co-operatives functioned with the co-operative principles:
- Voluntary association and open membership
- Democratic control
- Limited interest on capital
- Equitable division of surplus
- Co-operative education
- Co-operation among co-operatives
Singapore Teachers’ Credit Co-operative Society was set up in 1932 to provide a range of financial products and services specifically savings, loans and financial consultation to its members.
Singapore Teachers’ Credit Co-operative Society set up Singapore Teachers’ International Holdings Pte Ltd in 2004, as a vehicle used for investment in other business-related matter to Co-operatives. This enhances the benefits to its members, diversify the present business of financial products and services and indirectly create employment for the co-operative’s retired members.
Furthermore, sharing the heart of a dedicated educator, Singapore Teachers’ Credit Co-operative Society sets up its Students Welfare Grant in 2005 to help students. It has given $1,800 to 10 needy students each in 10 selected schools, preferably neighbourhood schools.
Mr Teo Chor Kai, Senior Manager of The Singapore Teachers’ Co-op shared his heart on Teachers’ Co-op to a group of staff of Unity Secondary School.
Apart from Singapore Teachers’ Credit Co-operative Society, there is Singapore Malay Teachers Multi-Purpose Co-operative Limited also known as Syarikat Guru Melayu Singapura Koperatif Bhd was set up in 1931 to safeguard the economy of the Malay teachers by encouraging thrift and loans. It provides quality financial and other personalised membership products and services based on Sya’riah and co-operative principles for its members.
Besides financial and personalised membership products and services, Singapore Malay Teachers’ Multi-Purposed Co-operative Limited set up two children care services to provide holistic pre-school education regardless of race, language and religion. There are SGM Murni Childcare Development Centre and SGM Little KIDZ @ Rivervale.
These two credit co-operatives provide the basic finance necessity for the teachers who are their members to enhance their life as they spent their times educating the students in schools.
Just like the teachers have the students’ backs, co-ops have the teachers’ backs too!
Happy Teachers’ Day to all the educators!
Share with your teachers or fellow educators about this article as a gift to their contribution!