Education Ministry needs to sort out Matriculation issue
By Huzraifah Atikah
The ongoing controversy over the matriculation student intake has spilled over to the social media with many voicing out their discontent online.
Netizens were aware about non-Bumi students who got straight As in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), yet got rejected for the matriculation programme.
This issue has caused many netizens to question the matriculation quota system.
According to the MoE, there have been no changes to the quota of 90% Bumiputera and 10% non-Bumiputeras for this year's matriculation intake.
“The original aim of the matriculation programme was to develop the potential of Bumiputera students in the science, technology and professional fields through quality pre-university education,” said MoE in a statement.
MoE clarified that the 2,200 places for Indian students and 1,000 places for Chinese students in the matriculation programme last year were a ‘one-off’ initiative.
The ministry said the students were selected based on the results of four SPM subjects and the particular interests of applicants, whether in science, accounting or engineering.
MoE also said that if a student got 10As in SPM, the selection would still be based solely on the four subjects.
Students’ co-curricular activities will amount to 10% of the marks and 90% will be based on their academic achievements.
The ministry said for 2019, 60% of the places will be given to those from the bottom 40 (B40) income bracket, with the remaining 40% given to the middle 40 (M40) and top 20 (T20).
The implementation of this new policy is more balanced, in line with the government’s plan to empower the lower-income group, the ministry said.
Students who had not received an offer to pursue the matriculation programme were encouraged to submit an appeal to the ministry by the end of this month.
Netizens are showing mixed feelings regarding the statement, here’s what some of them were saying:
However, there's a plot twist!
Former Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid responded to the issue by saying that the previous Barisan Nasional government's effort in increasing the number of Indian students intake was not a 'one off' thing.
"The BN government was committed to helping the Indian community, that was why 1,500 seats for matriculation programmes were offered to Indian students annually since 2012.
"And on April 7 last year, I had agreed to increase the quota for Indians to 2,200. This figure would have been maintained if Barisan remained in power," said Mahdzir.
Mahdzir also said in the 10-year Malaysian Indian Community Action Plan launched in April 2017, the BN government had promised to increase enrollment of Indian students into public universities, colleges and polytechnic institutions to at least 7%.
Following the backlash, Education Department director general Datuk Dr Amin Senin said the matter would be raised at the Cabinet meeting this Wednesday.
“The Education Ministry takes a serious view of the various issues arising from matriculation programme.
“Taking into account the views of all parties, the ministry will ensure that these issues are dealt with carefully, to find the best solution through the proper channels," Amin said.
Amin said the ministry had reviewed all proposals, including increasing the non-Bumiputera quota.
“Annually, there is a total intake capacity of only 25,000.
“So, the current policy is 22,500 places for Bumiputera students and 2,500 for non-Bumiputeras.
In the meantime, a message was widely spread on WhatsApp regarding a rally that will be held tomorrow in Putrajaya.
So, what do you think of this issue?