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Thursday, June 24, 2010

Annual assessments may replace UPSR and PMR, says Muhyiddin

The proposed abolishment of UPSR and PMR does not mean that students will no longer be evaluated through examinations, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said.

“Maybe it will be school-based assessments instead of public exams. This is just a suggestion. If we go ahead, we will have to coordinate the school-based system first,” he said.

On Sunday, Muhyiddin who is also Education Minister, said the Government was studying the possibility of abolishing UPSR and PMR as the current system was too exam-oriented.

He suggested that school-based assessments be conducted in place of the public examinations.

Yesterday, Muhyiddin told the Dewan Rakyat when winding up the debate on the 10th Malaysia Plan that the ministry was studying proposals to restructure the education system.

He said the changes should lead to improved creativity, innovativeness and students involvement in sports and co-curricular activities.

“The move will also discourage rote learning which places less emphasis on thinking capability.”

Furthermore, he said, the cutting down of the number of public exams would also save government expen­diture.

Muhyiddin also said that more Mandarin and Tamil language teachers would gradually be made available in national schools so that pupils would have the option of learning the languages.

Currently, about 500 schools were already teaching the languages as optional subjects, he said.

On Bagan MP Lim Guan Eng’s proposal that allocations given to Chinese schools be in proportion to their number of students, Muhyiddin said the Government needed to look at the education sector in a holistic manner.

“If we follow the student ratio for allocation (of funds), then it will be hard to justify schools in areas such as rural Sarawak (where enrolment is small but the cost of development is high),” he said.

On matriculation colleges, he said 10% of the intake was open to non-bumiputras.

He admitted there was a high demand for the colleges, with 100,000 students applying for the 20,000 spots available.

Star Online 24/06/10

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