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20 Years of Star Learners: A Journey Fuelled by Growth, Gratitude and the Human Touch

Tan Meng Wei
Chief Executive Officer
20 years with Star Learners

A Vision Beyond the Horizon

When Meng Wei took over the first Star Learners outlet in 2003, it heralded the start of a dream unfolding. What started as a modest endeavour and passion project soon bloomed into something beyond his wildest imagination.

How Star Learners propelled itself to be one of the largest child care brands in Singapore in two decades is not without his strategic vision and human-centric ways. It revolves around something simple, yet profound: Treat everyone with respect and recognise the human side in each person, be it a child, colleague or vendor. “I don’t see people as employees,” Meng Wei emphasises. “I always remember that they (our staff are invariably women!) are someone’s wife, someone’s mother and someone’s daughter. There’s a human side to all of us and I want that to constantly come through in Star Learners.”

Growth as the Ultimate Reward

For Meng Wei, the most rewarding aspect of running a business lies in its growth. The fear of mediocrity drives him to ensure that Star Learners constantly evolves, to empower individuals to grow. Over the years, he has witnessed the Star Learners family grow – not just in strength, but in its people acquiring skills, assuming leadership positions and then moving on to fuel further growth within the organisation. Growth, in all its forms, is what keeps him passionate even after two decades in the industry.


“I believe businesses need to grow, and that allows its people to grow. It has been incredibly fulfilling to see young(er) people spending years here, learning new skills, taking on leadership positions and watching them go on to develop others. It is the ultimate testament to our growth-oriented philosophy.”

Gratitude to Parents and Families

Addressing the parents and families past and present who have entrusted their children to Star Learners, Meng Wei expresses immense gratitude. “It’s a massive responsibility to care for and develop their children, and it’s something we will not take for granted,” he acknowledges. In recent years, Star Learners has seen its parent advocacy score continuously soar, achieving an all-time high Net Promoter Score of 64 this year. This vote of confidence underscores Star Learners’ continued dedication to quality preschool experiences for all children under their care.

Empowering a Family of Professionals

As Meng Wei reflects on the incredible team at Star Learners, admiration shines through. “They are such an amazing bunch of people,” Meng Wei commends, applauding their adaptability in an industry that transforms at a breakneck speed.

“I’m more than proud of how each of them grows not just as professionals but as human beings.” For those who have just embarked on their Star Learners journey, Meng Wei, with hand on his heart, assures them that Star Learners is a special place. “We’ll hold your hand enough so that even if you fall, you won’t get terribly hurt. More importantly, we’ll encourage you to explore, to challenge yourself and in that process, allow you to grow exponentially.”

As Star Learners marks its 20th anniversary this year, Meng Wei’s vision has evolved into a vibrant reality. The journey, marked by growth, respect and a deep commitment to nurturing both children and staff, stands as an inspiring testament to the enduring success of Star Learners in the dynamic realm of early childhood education.

The story of Star Learners is not just about the past 20 years; it's a celebration of what dreams, growth and the human touch can achieve in the next 20 and beyond.