Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Scrapping UPSR & PMR: Fait Accompli?

[My earlier statements on Examinations: "Scrapping UPSR & PMR A Good Move?" and "Academic Studies Support Retaining Examinations"]

Pua says government seems to have decided to scrap UPSR, PMR
By Boo Su-LynJuly 27, 2010

PUTRAJAYA, July 27 — The Education Ministry seems to have already decided to scrap the UPSR and PMR examinations though talks with stakeholders are still ongoing, said Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua today.

Malaysia Examination Board director Datuk Dr Salbiah Ismail had presented a proposal today on a replacement for the two public examinations.

“This showed that the ministry is taking active steps to work out a replacement for the exams,” Pua told reporters today after finishing his five-minute presentation at the second roundtable dialogue on the issue of scrapping UPSR and PMR.

“The position by the ministry seems that they are going to do it,” added Pua.

Salbiah’s proposal included creating an internal school assessment system and a guided methodology on how to conduct assessments up to the Form Five SPM level, as well as implementing “psychometric tests” on students’ emotions and character, said Pua.

Education Director-General Tan Sri Alimuddin Mohd Dom said last week that a report on the roundtable discussions would be submitted to the Education Minister by the end of August.

The ministry’s first official roundtable discussion took place on July 19, and was attended by over 120 educators, district education officers and teachers’ unions representatives.

Pua also expressed surprise when about 20 speakers at today’s roundtable discussion seemed to reject the scrapping of UPSR and PMR, contrary to past media reports showing that most parties generally supported the abolishment of the public examinations.

The National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP), the Sarawak Teachers’ Union, the West Malaysia Malay Teachers’ Union, and education academics reportedly favoured replacing the two public examinations with school-based assessments.

“Hardly anyone voiced direct support of [scrapping] UPSR and PMR,” said Pua, adding that about 20 out of the 40 scheduled representatives had spoken before him.

Pua noted that representatives from the Barisan Nasional (BN) parties like Umno Youth, MCA, MIC and Gerakan voiced reservations against abolishing the two public examinations.

The DAP is also against scrapping the UPSR and PMR examinations and claimed yesterday that students performed better when subjected to public examinations as shown by international research.

“They (academics) had reservations too,” said Pua, adding that representatives from universities like the Selangor Industry University (Unisel) and the Sultan Idris University of Education, as well as former civil servants of the education ministry were present at today’s dialogue.

“A lot of their reservations were expressed on the ability of teachers to cope in a non-standardised environment,” he added.

The Petaling Jaya Utara MP also said academics were concerned that a school-based assessment system may be prone to abuse as headmasters and teachers could manipulate student scores.


Anonymous said...

Don't know what this government is doing. Cut this crap out.

We have been having these exams since my days in primary school in the 70's. We have grown up to be responsible citizens.

It's this stupid flip flop decision of the Gomen to keep half the population stupid so that they will continue voting these craps into power. God , Please seriously help us!

Karen Lee Huey Shyan said...

A friend of mine told me about scrapping UPSR as early as two years ago. Teachers in primary school have known this as early as 2008. Not surprising if NUTP supports the scrapping as the teachers have already gone for all relevant briefings and courses to prepare for this.

Same story as the legalising of sports betting.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Those who are for the removal of the examination sysyem must be very brave people or they themselves did no fair well in exams. In the civil service we have a self assessment system. Please check the marks obtained by our civil servants. I would not be surprised if anyone gets below 75%. Those on promotion band are usually drawn from makrs 95% and above.

We have lost our way. Under the old system based on eaasy answers you must get over 75% to get an A.Then we introduced the objective tests. My feeling is that theymaintained the 75% benchmark for A. That may explain for the exponential growth of As.

In actual fact when you have an exam based on objective questions and or students can refer to text books in exams you must obtain 95% and above to get an A.

Just because we could have got these principles mixed -up does not mean that we have to get rid of exams. Has no one heard of fine-tuning? Ramalx

Anonymous said...

This is a bad idea. We are not ready to scrap UPSR and PMR. Please don't compare ourself and developed countries. We are not there yet. Please accept that fact that we are developing country, education industry is not mature enough to take this change.
If a change is to be introduce, we have to make sure it is going to be a better one. If we cannot make sure this is a better one, then "DON'T CHANGE".

Anonymous said...

Matt Balan,

The general position of Malaysians might well be that all institutions might not stand the test of full disclosure. However, Calvin's position has to be debunked and once for all designated to the thrash bin.

YB Tony might or might not already have info and data on MIDF. If he does have it, let's then bury Calvin's claims once and for all.

It should highlight the grave need for full disclosure.


IES Agencies said...

Is Ling Liong Sik another fait accompli?

Anwar says Ling Liong Sik is not a big enough fish for MACC: Who does Anwar want MACC to go after? read all about it HERE

Anonymous said...