On June 20, Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said the Ujian Penilaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) and Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) examinations may be abolished. He said this was part of government efforts to restructure the learning system which was seen as too examination oriented and failed to provide a holistic education.
His announcement has drawn mixed reactions.
Undoubtedly, there have been public criticisms that our school education system is too much examination orientated.
Due to this culture of examination and the need to excel in the examinations, many students have to take after school private tuition for up to 3 or 4 subjects.
As a result, many students and even the schools tend to place less emphasis on extra curricular activities.
However, it must be noted that while some educationists and academicians have generally welcomed the proposal to make our school system less examination oriented, they have also called for a careful study before implementing such a proposal.
The government has made a serious mistake in the introduction of Teaching Maths and Science in English policy. Our children must not be made guinea pigs again.
Effective changes to an education system can only be brought about by a holistic approach and total revamp.
Hence, I call on the government to set up a Special Committee of Educational Experts to study and make recommendations to revamp the present school system and curricular.