GESS 50: The 90s

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In the 90s, the German School Singapore (Deutsche Schule Singapur) established its first partnerships with other schools. This opened doors for regular exchange programmes with the Ministry of Education’s schools, whereby Singaporean students visited us, and also for exchanges with the French school, which was just across the street.

On the occasion of the German reunification in 1990, the Day of German Unity was celebrated with a big event on the school campus.

In December 1990, Mr. Dieter Gumpert was awarded the Federal Cross of Merit of the German Government for his many years of service to the German School Singapore.

From left: Mr. Lechner, former principal of DSS, 3rd from left Dieter Gumpert, to the right Mrs. OiLeng Gumpert.

The 90s were also generally dominated by the expansion of the campus on Bukit Tinggi Road. Due to the steadily growing number of students, additional buildings had to be added on a regular basis. In 1992, another building was constructed on the site of the former parking lot, which then housed the school’s cafeteria.

In 1994, Dr. Juergen Schumann joined the German School Singapore as a principal. As a carnival (Karneval) enthusiast, he brought a slice of Rhenish cultural heritage with him to the school.

Regular exchanges with the German School Kuala Lumpur began in the 1994-95 school year and continue to this day. In 1995, the DSS was connected to the Internet via the network of the National University of Singapore.

In November 1995, the German Chancellor, Helmut Kohl, visited the DSS as part of a trip to Asia. Also in this year, in cooperation with the DIHT (Deutscher Industrie- und Handelstag) and the GBA (German Business Association), a vocational branch was founded on 1 September 1995. The school offered vocational training for students to become wholesale and foreign trade merchants.

From 1995, the continuous growth of the school required the expansion of the school building. As with later building projects, the teachers and parents were involved in the planning from the very beginning. In order to create more classrooms, an additional floor was initially added to the theater in 1995.

Then the decision was made to extend the school by three building complexes, built in terraces on the slope, as well as to build a school tower with a viewing platform on the roof between the older and the new part of the school.

The growing number of new families in need of guidance and assistance in integrating into Singapore led to the establishment of the Buddies Committee in the 1995/96 school year.

In August 1997, five students completed their apprenticeship as wholesale and export merchants at DSS.

In December 1997, the extension site (approx. 2,800 sqm) was officially opened after 15 months of construction.

This expansion created 29 additional classrooms and function rooms, doubling the previous space. The construction costs of approximately DM 8.5 million were financed by the school association through a German banking consortium; public funds from the building fund of the German Foreign Office were not used.

Also in this year, the DSS published its first website at home.pacific.net.sg/ ~dss/.

In the school year 1998/99 the new Turtle Pond at the Buktit Tinggi Campus was inaugurated by Dr. Schumann. One of our staff members Mr. Ahmad had built it for the children. This Turtle Pond was one of the highlights of the school campus until the last day before the move to the Dairy Farm Campus. In 1999, DSS had 530 students.

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