This is the original review that I wrote for JC guide (ie references to Sept 11th bombings, RJ fat ah lians et al that you'll find in the review posted there were not by me).
Disclaimer: This was written with input from other people, especially the last section. I disclaim any and all responsibility (Read: blame) for this guide.
RJC is the Premier JC in Singapore. In most years, it is top in rankings. Students come from a variety of backgrounds and schools, and although many students are from RI and RGS (In the year 2001, 553 from RI and 421 from RGS of 1672 students), there is great diversity.
RJC is located in Ghim Moh, though at some indeterminate point in the future, it is supposed to move to beside where RI is now. With the endless delays, however, this will probably happen when pigs fly. RJ is located near ACJC, so you often see people from there at Ghim Moh and at Buona Vista MRT station.
RJC is good in all subject areas, unlike NJC which has chosen to specialise in Maths, and ACJC which specialises in, erm, well. Go read the ACJC review when it comes up. There is room in RJ for both slackers and muggers, so everyone can be happy.
Every other person appears so brilliant but you shouldn't be intimidated because a lot of them are faking it. On the other hand, some people like to pretend that they aren't studying at all when they are actually true-blue muggers - great actors. There are plenty of scholars in RJC, but it is not as replete with them as HCJC (Hualalalala JC) is with PRCs.
The faculty concept/so-called fac spirit isn't worth pittance. Especially now that with the emphasis on 'life sciences', the 'Medicine' (Biology) faculty has swollen to gargantuan proportions.
Be prepared to see the same bunch of RI/RGS prefects playing for the high-profile spots - the President and Vice-President of the 20th Students' Council were, respectively, the Head Boy and Vice-Head Boy of RI.
The RJ uniform has, for a few years, been provided by a fine outlet near Bukit Timah Plaza called 'Finest Fashion' - one of the greatest misnomers of our time. There is a conspiracy among at least 4 JCs (HCJC, RJC, VJC and NJC) to use some alien fabric (worse than sackcloth or hair shirts) for their uniforms which is fireproof, waterproof, coarse, hot and uncomfortable. The folks at PJ might be on this plot as well, seeing how rough their uniform is. To add insult to injury, the RJC uniform is a spooky purple tint to boot. The uniform is good for Girls who don't want to be seen as it is hard to glimpse anything under the sackcloth as it is very thick and water won't make it any less opaque. However, after half a year of washing, there isn't really much difference.
Rejoice, those who yearn to wear normal uniforms. Harken to the clarion
call. The uniform is going to be changed in 2002 (so the author is told by
the Discipline Master). If this happy turn of events does not come to pass,
however, you can always wear illegal uniforms (as many do) - the old RJ uniforms
from Bibi and Baba, older ones from relations, seniors and friends, Yangtse
Kiang blouses for the girls, or the RGS blouse for ex-RGS girls and RI uniform for the guys.
The male outfit of white pleated shirt and white pleated pants for the guys is acceptable, if a bit bland for those whose tastes lie on the more adventurous side. You are labelled even if you do not wear a badge by a 'Raffles' tag on the back pocket. The sleeves come 'folded' back, which might discomfit some who think that folded sleeves is a feminine thing. Beware of glowing under UV light. Most guys wear their uniform rather baggily.
Girls get to wear a green flare-type skirt, which is soft and which allows you to sit with your legs wide open, if you choose. The flexibility in seating positions (you can sit comfortably even on the floor) will be welcomed by some, but dreaded by those who have not mastered the Art of Sitting Properly. And may the Powers That Be protect you if a draft - especially bad in the corridors of the canteen comes and you are not holding on to your skirt. Worst comes to worst, you can always wear shorts underneath. Some hate the giant pleats on the skirt, and others the green colour (The Chemistry department points out that the RJ skirt is the exact same colour as copper (II) compounds like copper (II) hydroxide), but it is up to an individual's preference.
Folding of sleeves (a tradition in RGS) also means girls tend to keep a close watch on their personal grooming/hygiene or risk being 'shadowed'.
The PE attire is an RJC PE T-Shirt with black shorts. The colours of the Shirt are disgusting, with the Crest being mainly in shades of red and yellow and the word "Raffles" at the back being in a font that would disgust even those who have abyssmal tastes. The shorts sold at the bookshop have a layer of black material to protect you from any who might want to have a peek. Many people are fond of wearing FBT shorts or the like, and many girls wear them indecently at the waist (a la 'Hot Shorts'), such that their butts are exposed.
Many girls continue a RGS trend and wear oversized PE t-shirts so as to hide any semblance of a figure (or lack thereof) and hurriedly fold sleeves so they don't go past their elbows to their wrists. (Some of course wear very very tight ones)
Most people don't have a very high opinion of the canteen food, but it is passable.
If you have any dignity, avoid stall 4 - the pseudo-chicken rice stall. A Chinese teacher who has taught in RJC for 9 years commented that the stall owner has not learnt how to improve his cooking for 9 years. The Malay food stall at stall 10 is maybe second to stall 4 in (un)popularity. There might be some curse on this one - it keeps changing hands. The most popular stall is number 3, and the stall owner is so rich that he (allegedly) owns a Mercedes. If you are on a budget, stay away from the Vegetarian food as it is extremely expensive.
Most people traipse down to Ghim Moh market or even Holland Village after 12:30 when they are allowed to leave the School, so if you tire of the canteen food, it is not really a problem.
If you are vegetarian, do not fear (but for your wallet). There is a vegetarian support group in RJC! Every breaktime, they will sit down and drink the vile and disgusting liquid that passes for coffee in RJC. Occasionally (and no wonder, considering the price), they can be seen consuming produce from the vegetarian stall. Only thing is, it's made up of teachers and so you may be a little apprehensive. Do not be afraid of approaching them if you need friendly advice.
Almost all of the toilets in RJC are terrible. The ones outside the canteen and the below the Spectators' Gallery are usually dirty and wet, with mud on the floors. One cubicle in the male canteen toilet bears the grafitti, "Lee Fong Seng is a bastard". Some of the toilet bowls smell as if somebody has poured ammonia into them.
One of the female toilets has a tissue dispenser.
If you can be bothered to, climb to the second or third level toilets, as these are generally better. Alternatively, use the staff toilets. Tis rare that you will find a teacher lurking in one, anyways.
RJC is famed for being poorly endowed, but the facilities are passable. They look run down, but they do the job.
10 more air-conditioned "Temporary" Structures were added in June 2001, bringing the total to 20. The old ones are a little creaky, though, and sometimes shake menacingly if you jump.
The track and field and sports facilities are passable, if a little old. Paving stones are a little uneven here and there, but that's what almost 20 years does to a campus.
The Weights Room is barely decent, but it's still very popular and full between 5 and 7pm. Girls like the treadmill (and the chart on the wall with 'figure building exercises').
The coldest LT in the school is LT2, so bring your jackets when venturing into this fridge. Since the Operations Manager came in 2001, maintenance has generally been better, and the LT5 aircon no longer breaks down every other week. The write tops in the LTs are often loose - a devious plot on the part of the Administration to keep students awake and alert during Lectures.
There are study areas throughout the school, but during certain times, these will all be filled. Amuse yourself by reading the 'works' of past bored students. There is a semi-official "Vandalised Table" outside 3-7, which is full of quirky literature.
Most computers in the school are really lousy, but you can trek to Computer Lab 2 with the modern terminals if you are prepared to be disappointed by the hordes of PRCs or computing students swarming about, as they have already staked out the lab.
There are reputed to be several escape points where one can surreptitiously slip out of the school - one near the canal at the basketball court and one near the railway track. Useful if you get into a bind. Of course, one could stroll boldly out the front gate, with little chance of being challenged.
The RJC library is adequate. Unlike NJC, which has a 3 storey library with University texts for all to peruse, the RJC library is rather smaller and has a less substantial, though still functional, collection. The library stairs creak.
The librarians are well known throughout the school. The old librarian was crazy and much rued by students, which explains the rousing welcome given to the new one when she was introduced. However, there is still the grumpy man who occasionally closes the Media Centre when his wrath is incurred.
The quality of the teachers in RJ is debatable. Overall, they are good, regardless of what some students may profess. A number of the teachers are biased against Arts students, but this is common throughout the JCs.
The Physics department is said to be lousy, with several boring teachers,
one of which has only been seen smiling once in 2 years and has never made
a joke in 2 years and another of whom is a famous personality's daughter
and has been teaching for Eons but seemingly knows Hutchings the
Chief Examiner personally, but they somehow manage to get the job done every year. There is even a resident ghost, who is often seen haunting the hallways of the school with her pound of makeup. The Chemistry department is famous among the JCs, and all who take Chem profess that it is their most difficult subject. There is even a Dr Chan in their ranks who is very knowledgeable but
tries to communicate too much of all this in an unplatable manner. The HOD of science is a Chemistry teacher and is very nice and her trademark is having Winnie the Pooh graphics interspersed in her Powerpoint slides in chemistry lectures. The Biology department is supposed to be amusing and capable, though sadistic. They even have their own Warrior Princess.
The Maths department varies in quality. There is a Maths C teacher who is
very bad at English but is extremely amusing. Another is quick to anger and
is disliked by all she teaches. The F Maths branch is very good, with one
teacher who is especially popular with his students and is going
for a PhD in maths, though there is a walking Skeleton who, contrary to appearances, is actually very nice, albeit strict. The HOD's elocution leaves much to be desired, and he manages to mangle even simple words.
The GP and English department has several capable teachers, but some are accused of being dull. It would probably benefit you most if you engaged in active discussion with them.
The History Unit has "2 of the worst History teachers in Singapore", according to an ex-HCJCian who transferred after 2 months. They are very easy going and apparently don't know their stuff. Independent learning is essential if one is to do well in this subject.
The Economics department has a very funny and competent teacher teaching J1'01. He is a part time sports commentator and used to play on Lions United a few years ago. The HOD is very interesting and lively. There used to be one lousy Economics teacher, but she was transferred to YJC.
There are 3 teachers in RJ's computing department. Only one of them qualifies as being competent. Generations of Computing Students and Computer Science Club members have had the extreme misfortune to encounter one of them. The other 2 teachers are, thankfully, much better, so there's actually a chance you'll pass your computing. The 2 music teachers are very nice and are "more friends than teachers".
There is a female PE teacher (reputed to be a man) who, once in a while, walks around the school compound with a ruler to measure girls' skirt length. Skirt must be at most 8cm above the knee to prevent students portraying an inappropriate image for the school. She also walks around getting girls to tie up their hair. The female PE teacher is also a national weightlifter, so nobody messes around with her.
Chiobus & Yandaos:
Opinions on this vary. Some say that RJC has many ugly people, while others beg to differ. A commonly held opinion is that the people in RJC are getting uglier ever year (ie: the Class of 2000 looked better than the Class of 2001 which looks better than the Class of 2002)
Some girls don't grow out of their single-sex school basketball/track/related sport stereotype of tomboyishness, so those of you offended by butches should temper your sensibilities.
Eurasians/people of mixed heritage seem to dominate the perceived "chio" population. Examples are Thereis, Aurora, Faye Chin Robinson. In the J1 batch of 2001, there are several notable/famous people - one very tall ex-RGS prefect who is being chased by lots of guys and hangs out in the canteen after school to be seen, Stephanie (Sun Yan Zi) Sun's sister (who looks just like her and has a great voice to boot), Teo Liqing, Eva Tan and others. The outgoing J2 batch is not short of notables too, with Sarah Lin, Rika Tandean and one person who looks like a puppy.
RJC is one of the few JCs with touch rugby for girls, so you can see them touching each other during practice.
There is a whole class of ugly girls in J2 2001. The Geog (A03) people are the weirdest, and according to some, the chioest (considering that they are 99.9% female) in the school.
Gareth Wong Wei Han in council and track and field is supposedly the handsomest and has a good body. Another notable one is Percy Hung from basketball. Others: Luokai.
The most popular ecas include Odac, sailing, canoeing, interact, chorale, dance and so the most popular (and usually good looking) people can be found there. Rumour has it practically every guy (and possibly girl) in canoeing and rugby is on Creatine. This is believable seeing their bulk. Great for those who like ogling.