Sunday, July 8, 2012

The Grand Delusion?

Delusions - a belief held with great conviction despite contrary evidence that that belief is not true. Many of us would have created our own delusions but usually sense will prevail and we snap out if it. But some of us live in a delusional state, for reasons known and unknown.

This thought on delusion came up after reading this. The reality is this.... Matriculation is for the elite; with race preceding results. Form 6 is for the masses, for those whose parents cannot afford private colleges. There are many with good results but because they come from such families and are not Bumiputeras, Form 6 is the only path.

The Minister is right in the sense that Matriculation is a better choice because it offers an easier path to the local universities, not because of it is of better quality. Over the years, I've heard of students with less than 6A(s) in SPM but scoring a CGPA of 4.0 in Matriculation. Meanwhile, it's not uncommon to hear of students with up to 9-10 A(s) getting less than 3.0 in their STPM. Students with 4-5 A(s) go into Matriculation and are almost assured of places in the local universities. The same students will have very much less opportunity via the STPM path. Some universities reserved more than 70% of their places for certain courses for Matriculation. Go figure, 70% for 20,000. 30% for 80,000 to fight it out. If this is not elitist, don't know what is.

Some universities offer their own Matriculation programmes known as Asasi Sains. And these are more or less assured of places too. In the end, the Form 6 students are left with the crumbs. It's okay to have multiple systems if the level of difficulty is the same. But the general perception is Matriculation is easy. Word has it that out of the estimated 25,000 matriculation students, 2000 scored 4.0. That's almost 8% of the total.

In last year's STPM, 12 students had straight A(s) in 5 subjects and 298 scorerd 4.0 (0.58%). Now that is out of 80,000 candidates! So, all the smart ones go into Matriculation, get better facilities (supposedly) and places assured (almost) at local universities. We inadvertently create classes within our society with taxpayers' money!

STPM is tough...well, at least the old format was. It's acknowledged as one of the tougher exams in the world. Matriculation on the other hand has problems being recognized even out of Malaysia. But what is more insidious is how Matriculation plays a role in making Malaysia more racial. It's only in recent years that its doors have been opened to non-bumis. If we are serious about creating a true 1Malaysia, it time to have one system or parallel systems with equal standards.

Delusions are pathological. It indicates that there is falsehood, incomplete information, illuision, dogma, incomplete or skewed perception. Delusions create more delusions and give birth to selfishness, myopia, lies, etc, etc. We have been living under many delusions......

We claim to have one world class education system but none of our universities are at the top.

We claim that our national car is comparable to other makes but it hasn't made any real impact anywhere. In fact, we Malaysians, have had to pay more for 'better' cars...

Then on the other end of the spectrum....
The people claim that crime rate has gone up... but the top Man in Blue says it's only a perception.
The man on the street claims that the cost of living has gone up, data shows that inflation is creeping along fine....

Delusions or cold hard facts.... It's so difficult to see them for what they truly are....


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