Life experience of the epidemic

My name is Tang Jie. I am a Chinese teacher from The Anglo Chinese School in Singapore. I am 40 years old.I have been in Singapore for more than 20 years. In the 1990s Chinese people knew very little about Singapore. Before I came here, what impressed me most about Singapore was that it is one of the Asian tigers and a garden city. (Singapore was one of the Four Asian tigers whose economies were booming.) I came to Singapore because I had a scholarship from my university -- a very simple reason. And very many people at that time, I want to go to the United States and other places, but after come, slowly learned after Singapore, I'm more like the place, and the United States or Europe, Singapore no amazing mountains and rivers, not that kind of let a person love at first sight, but a let a person slowly like a place.
Love Singapore

Having lived here for more than 20 years, Singapore gives me a sense of peace. Life here is as quiet as still water, like a calm lake, so that you live very comfortable, very calm, very secure, your heart never ups and downs. During my four years of university study in Beijing, I experienced a lot of things that made me feel excited. It seems that I haven't found that feeling in 20 years. So I think Singapore is a great place to be if you're not one of those people who want to be adventurous, if you want to be curious, if you want to live and work.

Why is Singapore so calm? I think the most important thing is that this is a society under the rule of law, law enforcement is very strict. Anyone who makes any mistake will pay a great price. As a result, most of its residents are at peace with themselves, and as a result, society is naturally harmonious and secure. There are many races, many cultures, many different backgrounds. In such an environment, can achieve such a subtle harmony, is very rare.

Perceptions and feelings about the epidemic

As a teacher, I feel deeply about this epidemic. In fact, I think this outbreak is very similar to SARS over a decade ago, and I was very impressed by that experience. It is very similar to this one, originating in the wild and slowly expanding as the virus spreads. People don't care, they don't realize how serious it is, and then they realize how dangerous the virus is and how quickly it spreads.

Therefore, both outbreaks were caused by some early negligence and some poor preparedness, which later became a global epidemic and attracted the attention of the World Health Organization. The biggest impact of the epidemic on me, other teachers and students, was the isolation, the suspension, the shutdown. At that time, I was still in the school of Education and had not yet officially worked in the school. I vividly remember one night when I was listening to the radio and the news broke. According to the news, due to the severity of the outbreak, the decision has been made to close schools and companies.

The news came out of the blue. I was completely unprepared. I left a lot of things at school, but I couldn't go back to get them. The next day, everyone stayed at home, the streets were suddenly empty of cars, and the world came to a standstill. It was a very shocking experience.

Government decisions and parental voices

In this outbreak, the government has promised to take all measures to prevent the epidemic from spreading and to reassure parents, teachers and students that they will do what they have to do instead of encouraging schools to stop. But in the school, parents and some teachers still pay close attention to every policy of the Ministry of Education and the development of the epidemic.

On the day Singapore's government switched its immunization status to orange, many parents wanted schools to be closed, unwilling to send their children to school and hoping that their children would stay home from the virus. With a growing number of suspected cases in Singapore, where the World Health Organization has designated the coronavirus a pandemic, many are skeptical that the outbreak will be brought under control.

Although a student staying at home will have some influence on his studies. Students can still teach themselves at home using materials and assignments from school partners and from the grade director. It's just that I think in the future, there will be more and more voices from many parents and some schools to close.

The actual response of the school

In recent months, the students in our school, from middle one to middle six, did not feel much about the epidemic, did not panic, perhaps did not realize the seriousness of the epidemic. Masks are not required at school, so few people wear them.

There are several reasons for this. First, because of their age, none of the students have experienced anything like this. Secondly, these students are all local people, so they are accustomed to the quiet patriarchal society, and they listen to the government very much. If the government has taken measures, they will be very safe and will not have too much fluctuation in their hearts. In a word, it is the living environment here that gives them such a mentality, so they need more supervision from parents and teachers.

Now, the school is taking steps to get students to pay attention to the epidemic by establishing school rules and organizing activities. For example, students should be divided into several waves and have meals at different times. For example, students should not turn on the air conditioner as soon as they enter the classroom, but the classroom must be ventilated first. In addition, students should be encouraged to wipe their desks with disinfectant frequently. It is through such a series of school rules to guide students to pay attention to the epidemic.

A mad rush for masks

One thing that impressed me particularly in this outbreak was the buying up of masks. At the beginning, I would never wear a mask unless I took the bus, drove myself or went to school. Therefore, I bought a mask in the supermarket just for spare, and gave masks to my friends in China, because the epidemic situation in China was very serious at that time. In the process of buying masks, I found masks were selling so fast, it turned out to be such a thing that overnight, all masks were gone. Later, I bought online.

At first, the price of masks was fine, but gradually it rose, making masks more difficult to buy. In addition, in the past month, I have been chatting with friends and searching for keywords on the Internet related to masks, which immediately became the focus of the moment. At that time, when SARS happened, people didn't pay much attention to the mask, but this time, masks really became a thing that the whole world was talking about and fighting for.

Slow down and start thinking again

Another side effect of this event is to make more people rethink their lives. It's a very, very busy time at this time of year. The school has all kinds of competitions, all kinds of performances, all kinds of training. The students are busy, so are our teachers. Now that all the activities have been cancelled, My feeling is that without the original activities, the day can still go on.

What's more, the students love to study more, they miss less classes, and they are busy studying. After school, with no extra-curricular activities, our teacher can go out of school. Find someone to have a cup of coffee, talk about life, feel the day is good. So I think sometimes people need to fill their feet to be able to think better. If the pace of life is too fast and work is all day long, then there is no time to calm down and think.

Personal speculation and hope

With the worldwide outbreak, the epidemic is expected to peak in April. Now, all parts of the world are locked in. Australia is turning inward this week, and So is Malaysia. Countries everywhere locked in for the peak, and then the growth should slow down. If there is no country to lock up the country, the peak will never come, because there is no way to control the epidemic. Once locked in, you can predict when the peak will come and then slowly bring the epidemic under control and bring the Numbers back down. So, hopefully, the epidemic will come down after the April peak.

As the weather turned hot, he decided to go to school early to see if the students had opened their Windows.

Interviewed By

Chuxin Liang


Tang Jie

Interview Date