Putrajaya reacts to poor performance in global students survey, forms committee

The Education Ministry has reacted to the dismal performance of Malaysian students in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) by forming a special committee to improve on the country's ranking.

The New Straits Times reported that the special committee would be led by the curriculum development section and would comprise professionals sections from the ministry.

The committee is tasked to identify and monitor initiatives to improve students' performance in international assessments such as PISA.

PISA is a triennial international survey which evaluates education systems worldwide by testing the skills and knowledge of 15-year-old students. The 2012 PISA, involving 510,000 students in the subjects of reading, science and mathematics, has placed Malaysia at the 52nd spot out of 65 countries.

Malaysia's 15-year-olds were not only found to be below the international average in the three critical subjects, but also four to five years behind their peers in Shanghai, Singapore, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Taiwan.

The Education Ministry said although the recent PISA results were not encouraging, it was confident that the recently unveiled education blueprint, the Malaysian Education Development Plan 2013-2025, would help the country achieve better ranking in the next PISA instalment.

"The Malaysian Education Development Plan 2013-2025 was developed on par with international standards. It will definitely help Malaysian students to perform better in future international assessments," it said, as quoted by the New Straits Times.

The ministry said it was coming out with measures to address weaknesses in students as found by the 2012 PISA assessment, including an initiative to address the content and skill gaps in subjects such as mathematics and science.

Yesterday, Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin came under fire for his silence over the 2012 PISA results.

DAP's Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang told Muhyiddin to come out with concrete plans to prove that the education blueprint for the country's 15-year-olds is "no pie in the sky". - December 11, 2013.