THE government’s plan to abolish the Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) and Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) has taken many people by surprise.
Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said 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, adding that the move would also discourage rote learning which placed less emphasis on one’s thinking capability.
I am of the view that major public examinations are held to assess a student’s knowledge and skills in whatever he or she has learnt at school.
Without exams, children will not see the urgency in studying and would give little or no importance to their books. Is this what we want?
If the examinations were to be abolished, then students will move on easily from one grade to another until they reach Form Five, when they will be evaluated.
Wouldn’t it be too late then especially if there are weaker students, who if they were assessed earlier, would have been able to get remedial classes?
While it is important to participate in extra curricular activities since they bring out a person’s social skills, examinations are still necessary for students to gauge their academic level in the real world and for older students, perhaps even globally.
Exams like UPSR and PMR should not be done away with as they are indeed necessary especially with the declining standards in our education system.
UTHAYAKUMAR TECHINAMOORTHY Via e-mail
Source: The STAR Home News Opinion Sunday March 11, 2012