Not streaming upper secondary students a step in the right direction

The Consumers’ Association of Penang (CAP) would like to commend the Education Minister, Dr Maszlee Malik for introducing a more flexible education model for upper secondary students. We believe that with this new system, students will not feel that they are being pressured into certain career paths because they have been streamed after their PT3.

At this point in time there are two things we would like to highlight.

Firstly, we hope that the Education Ministry and secondary schools will be able to execute this new system smoothly so that the Form 4 students next year will be able to study in a focused and stress free condition.

Secondly, the ministry has taken the step to change the streaming system; as such we ask that other important aspects of our education system also be considered. For instance, the ministry should do something to eliminate Malaysia’s “work-book” culture and they should also introduce syllabus that encourage critical thinking and cause students to be more socially concerned. Furthermore, there should be more stringent assessment to determine if someone is suitable to be a teacher in both qualifications and temperament; likewise with certain positions in schools such as the principal, disciplinary teacher, etc.

To better our education system it is vital to look at the whole picture; the ministry must look at “what” students are taught and also “how” students are taught.

There has been criticism from certain interested parties that the new system of having subject “packages” is just a smokescreen to mask the streaming system. While it is true that students are not free to mix and match subjects to get any combination they wish, it is undeniable that there are more subject combination options for those entering Form 4 in 2020.

This is a step in the right direction as it will open the door to more positive changes to our education system in the near future.


Press Statement, 28 November 2019