Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said the Education Ministry would announce if the Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) would be replaced with a school-based assessment system based on a study that is underway.
He said the study involved looking at education models in South Korea, Finland and France where emphasis is less on examination but on the overall performance of a student.
Mahdzir added that in some systems, there are no examinations at all.
Students are instead evaluated under a school assessment system that takes into account their overall performance after five or six years, he said.
Examinations are forms of assessments, whether written or verbal. They are forms of evaluation but done in a score-point system.
Earlier in Parliament, Mahdzir clarified that the implementation of the new UPSR format was announced in 2010 with the examinations implemented in 2016.
He said the assessment was based not only on the pupils’ academic performance but overall performance in school covering participation in curriculum activities and discipline.
A parent, Jessica Teng, said parents would be the first who will be confused when they have been brought up via the examination formats.
“If they do a proper research and study, prep the teachers, educators, principals and assessment officers in advance then it could work,” she said.
“I agree with going assessment-based instead of being examination-oriented, but it’s whether our teaching professionals are ready.
“What would the impact be for pre-schoolers and high school students? Did you know that there are parents today who demand that pre-schools to be more academic based, and they hope pre-schools can prep the students for exam when they reach primary school. So once they do away with exams, what’s going to be the demand or focus for the children?”
The lack of qualified educators is still a glaring problem in the country and the Education Ministry should solve that problem before even thinking about changing examination methods.
“I think it’s crazy to only conduct a study for a year and then decide on that study without allocating time to prepare the educators.
“There must a feasibility study done instead of comparing our education system to countries like South Korea, Finland and France,” she added.
Source : Soo Wern Jun@The Heat Malaysia Online