Press Release 18 Nov 2021


The National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University (NIE NTU) Singapore, is holding the eighth Leading Foundation Teacher Award on Wednesday, 24 November 2021, to honour four exemplary early childhood and special needs educators who have made significant contributions to the well-being and teaching of their students. The awards are sponsored by The Leading Foundation, which was co-founded by Professor Lim Siong Guan and Ms Joanne H. Lim.


Guest of Honour, Mrs Jennifer Lim, wife of Professor Lim Siong Guan, will present the award to four passionate and dedicated educators in the fields of Early Childhood Education, Special Education and Allied Educators for Learning and Behavioural Support. Each award winner will receive a cash award of S$2,500 and an award certificate.


The award recipients consistently exemplify their passion for teaching by putting in commendable efforts to make a difference in the lives of children under their care. By creatively applying their pedagogical skills and unique experiences at their workplace, they bring out the best in every student as well as their learning outcomes.


To celebrate the occasion, Professor Lim Siong Guan shared “It has to be the goal of Singapore to help every Singaporean be the best they can be according to their talents and abilities and to be able to contribute towards the well-being of themselves, their families and their fellow citizens the best way they can. As Singapore progresses in economic and social development, we are able to do more and better in this regard. Talents and abilities, as well as disabilities, get identified earlier, and appropriate interventions become more accessible.


The Leading Foundation Teacher Award seeks to advance these developments by recognising and appreciating the work of dedicated and pioneering teachers who contribute their energies and imaginations towards improving the capacities and capabilities of children and youth who can benefit from more than standardised, mainstream instruction.”


Adding on to Professor Lim Siong Guan, Associate Professor Caroline Koh, Head, Psychology and Child & Human Development Academic Group agreed that “Quality early childhood experiences and environments are essential in supporting the development of competencies that foster a child’s school readiness and future success. However, not every child develops at the same pace. As such, we need dedicated educators who can provide early intervention for young children in need of the specialized developmental support that is critical to their life-long growth and well-being.


The Leading Foundation Teacher Award gives due recognition to such passionate and committed practitioners whose excellent work has made significant impact on children in the fields of early childhood and special needs education. In addition, the award offers a platform for the awardees to share their creative strategies and pedagogical approaches with peers. In its 8th edition, it continues to serve as an aspiration towards excellence and dedication in teaching.”




Established in 2013, The Leading Foundation Teacher Award was the first award in Singapore to honour excellence in early childhood, special needs and allied educators. The awards are sponsored by The Leading Foundation, which was co-founded by Professor Lim Siong Guan and  Ms Joanne Lim, co-authors of the books "The Leader, The Teacher & You and Winning with Honour. The awards are administered by the National Institute of Education (NIE), Singapore, and the Community Foundation of Singapore (CFS).


Nominations received were evaluated by a panel of experts from NIE, Ministry of Education and the National Institute of Early Childhood Development (NIEC). The panel looked for inspiring educators who have displayed exceptional dedication and commitment, gone beyond the call of duty to care for their students, and made significant contributions to their students and the schools they worked in.

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