Appointment of New Principal, Raffles Institution

  1. The Raffles Institution Board of Governors is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr Aaron Loh as Principal of Raffles Institution with effect from 15 December 2023. He succeeds Mr Frederick Yeo who will be taking on the new appointment of Director, Educational Leadership and School Excellence in the Ministry of Education (MOE). 

  2. Mr Yeo, 52, was appointed Principal of Raffles Institution on 15 December 2017. Prior to his appointment, he was the founding principal of Crest Secondary School from 2012 to 2017, Singapore’s first Specialised School for Normal (Technical) students and a subsidiary institution of the Institute of Technical Education (ITE). 

  3. As Principal of RI, Mr Yeo was integral in introducing three broad principles to guide the school’s programming approach – diversity, inclusivity, and community engagement (D.I.C.E for short). The intent is to develop Rafflesians holistically, so that while they continue to excel academically, they are also encouraged and supported to develop as others-centric and community-oriented young adults. D.I.C.E thus builds on the Institution’s mission of character development by imbuing in our students a deep empathy for the disadvantaged in the community and a strong intrinsic motivation in wanting to make Singapore a more socially inclusive and cohesive society. 

  4. Under Mr Yeo’s leadership, new Direct School Admissions (DSA) domains in Character & Leadership, Malay Language and Basketball were introduced, which helped the Institution to make encouraging headway in its diversity and inclusivity efforts. In addition, the Malay Language Elective Programme (MLEP-Junior College) and Elective Programme in Malay Language (Secondary) were started in RI in 2020 and 2023 respectively. He also initiated the RI Mentoring Programme in partnership with 10 primary schools, where Rafflesians serve as mentors to primary school students in Primary 4 and follow up with them until they are in Primary 6. The P4 to P6 mentoring programme spans over 10 years. In line with his vision of engendering meaningful community engagement and greater opportunities for social mixing, he expanded the Raffles Boarding Programme to enable more students from 10 other secondary schools to board with RI students, with funding support for the programme lasting 10 years. Sports twinning programmes in basketball and football were also established with Guangyang Secondary School. 

  5. Mr Yeo is also a strong proponent of student well-being, initiating several systemic changes so that the Raffles school experience is more intentional in promoting the physical, mental and socio-emotional well-being of our students. Some of the changes made include a later school start time for all levels, changes to the computation of the Year 1-4 Grade Point Average and Year 5 Assessment Framework to recalibrate assessment rigour and academic anxiety of students, removal of the mid-year examinations at Year 1-4 in 2019 before MOE implemented it across all schools two years later, and phasing out the ‘O’ level track in RI so that all Year 1-4 students are on the six-year Raffles Programme. He also initiated the weekly GAP Day at Year 5-6 in 2021, foregrounding the importance of Co-Curricular Activities (CCA), self-directed learning, rest and unstructured time in the lives of our students. Mr Yeo was at the helm during the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring the well-being of the staff and students during the crisis, even while laying the groundwork for the Institution to emerge stronger and ready to celebrate its historic Bicentennial with vigour in 2023. The year-long RI Bicentennial celebrations in 2023 were a resounding success that brought Rafflesians across all ages together as One Community to celebrate their alma mater.

  6. RI’s Board of Governors would like to put on record its deep appreciation to Mr Yeo for his leadership of Raffles Institution. The Board also wishes him the best in his future endeavours in the education service. 

  7. The Board warmly welcomes Mr Aaron Loh, 48, who has been in education for more than 20 years and is currently the Divisional Director of Educational Technology in MOE. Mr Loh was a student in RI from 1988-1991 and in RJC from 1992-1993, after which he obtained his Bachelor of Arts (Honours) from the University of Cambridge and a Masters in English and American Literature from Stanford University. Trained as an English teacher, he first taught in Raffles Junior College before he was posted to the Ministry of Law and Ministry of Education to serve in various capacities. He later served as Vice Principal of Clementi Town Secondary School, before pursuing a second Masters degree in Learning, Design and Technology at Stanford University. He was the Principal of Commonwealth Secondary School for five years before his current appointment. 

  8. The Board is confident that Mr Loh’s experience, affinity for the school and leadership in education make him well-placed to lead RI post-Bicentennial. Under his stewardship, RI is ready to scale the next innovation curve and continue growing from strength to strength as a leader in the future of learning.