Damai Secondary School

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Damai Secondary School
Damai Secondary School.jpg
4800, Bedok Reservoir Road
Type Government
Established 1994
Session Single session
School code 3056
Principal Mr Chow Weisi
Colour(s) Maroon and White

Damai Secondary School (DMSS) is a government co-educational secondary school in Singapore. It stands next to the Bedok Reservoir, flanked by the Pan Island Expressway (PIE).


Damai Secondary School was established in 1994. Currently, it has approximately 1,500 students (known as Damaians).

The school has been expanded several times. In 2000, the National Education corner was added. Between 2002 and 2004 the school was upgraded under the PRIME programme, enlarging and improving the school facilities.

In 2002 and 2003 Damai came 49th in Singapore in its express stream results. In 2002 it was awarded the People Developer Standard (this was renewed in 2005 for another three years.)

Its technical stream was awarded the 30th Singapore NUTMEG Prize. This was presented by the managing director, Chang Yeng Yong.

The school has strong emphasis on National Education (NE)& was awarded the Outstanding Devt Award NE from 2006-2010. Its NE framework includes student leadership devt, student-centric processes, NE integrated curriculum & establishing strategic partnerships with the community. The school was successful in creating a Borderless Learning environment in 2010 using mobile devices, WiFi & Bluetooth technology. The school's inter-disciplinary Project Work is integrated with the use of ICT. In 2008, the school introduced the use of mobile learning, using Bluetooth-enabled handphones to engage its lower and upper secondary students. The school shared its mobile learning approach at the Int'l Conference on Teaching & Learning with Technology (ICTLT) at Suntec City.


Damai has a main building including a general-purpose hall, about 40 to 50 classrooms (including the Geography and History Rooms), an AV Theatre, Media Resource Library, 4 Computer Labs, 2 Physics Labs, 2 Biology Labs, 2 Chemistry Labs, Staff Common Rooms, a Canteen, a bookshop, general office, conference room,2 FCE(home economics) kitchens, Homecon Sewing Room, Design and Technology staff room, D&T Innovation Lab, a T&L lab,and a cafeteria.

There is a "Harmony Room" with exhibits on the different races in Singapore and their unique cultures,and the school's history.

Damai has developed a "wireless mobile learning environment" through the use of Bluetooth or WiFi technology. This allows students to use their smartphones(with the teachers' permission) in class to send answers to questions that their teachers sent using their own mobile phones or notebooks.This also allows a Damaian student to complete assignments as many projects are to be done online,on Microsoft or PowerPoint.

Co-curricular activities (CCAs)[edit]

Damai Softball Team

As an integral part of Singapore's educational system, Damai has planned for suitable CCA programmes to teach pupils skills, inculcate in them the correct values and desirable social attitudes, and provide for healthy recreation. Performing groups include [1], Guzheng [2], Modern dance [3], School choir (Damaivoice) [4] and Symphonic band (DamaiWindz) [5]. Sports and Games includes canoeing [6], netball [7], softball [8] and rugby [9]. Uniformed Groups includes The Boy's Brigade [10], Girl Guides [11], NCC [12], NPCC [13], Scouts [14] and SJAB [15]. Clubs and Societies includes The Art Club[16], Library [17] and The Media Club[18].

Student Parliament[edit]

[19] Members of the Student Parliament are known as student councillors, or simply "councillors". Entry is based on a teacher's recommendation or nomination when the student is in Secondary 1. Councillors obtain LEAPS CCA points under the "Leadership" category, and are given certain rights over other ordinary students' discipline. Councillors must wear a special school tie and a name badge with the word "Student Councillor" on it. With effect from 2008, Student Councillors, Peer Leaders and National Education Ambassadors merged to form the Damai Student Leadership body, known as Student Leaders. The Student Leaders represent the student population of Damai Secondary School and have organized many school events. The Student Leaders organize events like the Secondary 1 Orientation Camp and Teachers’ Day celebrations yearly. The Student Leaders are also actively involved in other events like the Sports Day, Meet-the-Parents sessions and Prom Ball. The Student Leaders also assist in the running of the school, which includes morning and weekly assembly duties. Student Leaders actively spread National Education messages to the student population, extend community and national outreach and promote the school image and pride.

House Affiliations[edit]

DMSS house of the year trophy

From 1994-2015, to encourage a competitive spirit, Damai Secondary School has a house system comprising four houses. They are the Achievers (Red), Strivers (Blue), Victors (Green), and Winners (Yellow).

At the start of every year, each new student starting in Secondary 1 is allocated by the PE department into one of these houses, based on his/her index number in class.

There are regular house meetings for the selection of new house leaders, and allowing the house members to decide if they want to join in a particular sports events on sports day. Following the house meetings there are house-related activities such as sports or quizzes.

There is a cumulative points system, strengthened by participation in sport or other events. At the end of the year, the house that has accumulated the most points is declared "house of the year", winning the trophy of the house of the year.

Damai's emphasis on the society and National Education[edit]

In line with Singapore's holistic education system and policies, Damai Secondary School emphasizes the society and National Education.

Starting from lower secondary (Secondary 1 and Secondary 2 pupils, normally those aged 12 to 14), Damaians are given opportunities to serve society, and to understand the virtues of National Education. This is achieved by means of Community Involvement Programmes, through their curriculum and their CCAs. Flag Days, beach and park cleaning, and other volunteer works are examples.

Besides this, Damai has cooperated with many charitable organisations (such as Moral Elderly Care Centre of Bedok North) to organise and/or participate in community work.

There is an annual National Education Learning Journey for all Damaians. Based on their academic levels, students visit different places of heritage in Singapore. This provides them with actual experience of Singapore's history and heritage.

Damai has set up a National Education committee, supported by student NE ambassadors. (The NE ambassadors are named by DMSS Humanities Department). The DMSS NE committee is responsible for the planning of NE activities in DMSS, and for the NE-related facilities in DMSS.

NE-related facilities in Damai consist of a mini NE garden, a NE corner at one of the staircases, and a NE concept flowchart mural just outside the school canteen.

Damai's Twinning and Exchange projects[edit]

In view of rising globalisation, Damai has realised the need for interaction with other schools all over the world, for more resources and better strategies.

To this end, in June 2006 Damai entered a bilateral "sister schools" link with Dongpo Experimental Middle School (DEMS) (in Emeishan, Sichuan, China) in March–June 2006. In the process, two department heads from Damai were sent to China to visit the school, and to sign the agreement.

Twinning immersion projects have been held for some DEMS students visiting Singapore. Their activities in Singapore included curriculum immersion lessons, CCA hands-on, and NELJ. Meanwhile, administrative staff accompanying the students learned about the Singapore's education system, and the mode of operation in a typical Singaporean secondary school.

In 2009 Damai has established an Internationalization Committee to further develop cross-cultural learning and relation-building with people of other countries.

Uniform and discipline[edit]

Damai students wear an all-white uniform: white shirt (with maroon school tie), white trousers and maroon coloured skirt for girls, white shoes and socks. Boys in secondary 1 and secondary 2 must wear short trousers, graduating to long trousers in secondary 3.

The disciplinary system is based on a demerit points system for minor offences. Students earn demerit points each time their shirt is not tucked in or they are not wearing their tie or for being late to class, eating in class, etc. If they reach 10 points they must serve a detention. At 20 points there is another detention, and the student's parents are informed. Students who reach 30 demerit points in one term are suspended for a number of days (girls) or spanked on the bottom with a big cane (boys) and their conduct is marked "Fair".

Detentions are also given out for latecoming for a number of times.The detention lasts 2 to 4 hours and must be served the following day. Students who fail to turn up for the allotted detention receive suspension (girls) or spanking (boys).

Boys who are caught smoking in school uniform are disciplined with two smacks of the cane and are also referred to the health authority to attend smoking cessation clinic.

For other serious offences such as fighting or vandalism, the student, if male, must receive a "public caning" whereby he is brought in front of an assembly of the full student body either in the hall or on the parade square. Normally a public caning at Damai involves several boys punished in turn. The spanking ceremony is performed by the school's Discipline Master, with a minimum of two strokes across the buttocks for each offender. This serves as a deterrent and it is often only necessary to hold one or two public canings each term.[1]

In 1997, then-principal James Ong told the Los Angeles Times that caning was administered at Damai for offences including fighting or disrespecting a teacher. "We do not seek permission from parents", he said. "We will cane first and inform you later. Parents must trust us to give the child a good education. We have the welfare of the children in mind."[2]


Designed by Samuel Teo Gek Seng, the DMSS logo incorporates the initials DSS of Damai Secondary School, forming the seed of education which is of primary importance in the formative years of young people and which when carefully planted will grow into flames of faith, hope, and charity, the three components of the school motto.

Notable Alumni[edit]


  1. ^ Damai Discipline Procedures page (2008).
  2. ^ "Clinton to US schools: Catch up with Singapore", The Straits Times, Singapore, 9 March 1997.

External links[edit]