KUALA LUMPUR: Critics should not be quick to put down the local education system as things are improving, said Education Minister II Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh.
Quoting a study by Education First (EF), an international group that specialises in language training, educational travel, academic degree programmes and cultural exchange, Idris said the survey showed Malaysia had better English proficiency than Singapore.
“It is an independent body saying this,” he told reporters after opening a conference on leadership and governance in public universities here yesterday.
“Of course, we need to do better to improve the quality of education.
“I want us to be the best, but we are not as bad as people make it out to be.”
The latest edition of the EF English Proficiency Index ranked Malaysia 11th and Singapore 12th out of 60 countries surveyed.
The index used data from two EF English tests – one is available for free to all Internet users and the other is an online placement test used for enrolment into English courses.
In another development, Idris said the exact number of students who had gained entry into public institutes of higher learning this year would only be known when the appeal process was over.
“There may be more students admitted overall. We can’t make a projection before the (university) appeal process is over,” Idris added.