<?php ini_set('display_errors', 1); ?>
at the top of your script will not catch any parse errors. A missing ")" or ";" will still lead to a blank page.
This is because the entire script is parsed before any of it is executed. If you are unable to change php.ini and set
then there is a possible solution suggested under error_reporting:
[Modified by moderator]
You should also consider setting error_reporting = -1 in your php.ini and display_errors = On if you are in development mode to see all fatal/parse errors or set error_log to your desired file to log errors instead of display_errors in production (this requires log_errors to be turned on).