High pass rate for Punjabi paper despite obstacles


DESPITE some school principals not allowing students to sit for the Punjabi language paper in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examinations last year, there was a 95.5% pass rate.

Khalsa Diwan Malaysia president Santokh Singh Randhawa said of the 45 students who sat for the paper, 43 passed.

This result meant that the paper has the highest pass rate compared to other language papers.

Khalsa Diwan is a Sikh non-governmental organisation entrusted to develop and promote the teaching and learning of the Punjabi language in Malaysia.

It runs Punjabi classes in more than 40 centres nationwide.

Santokh said the results showed remarkable performance in terms of quality, as 28 students or 62.2% obtained an A+, A or A-, with the average subject grade (GPMP) of 2.82 for the paper. (A lower index value indicates better candidate achievement).

He said the trend has been going on for some time. In 2019, a 100% pass rate was recorded.

“Despite the imposition of online teaching, and the refusal of some school heads to allow students to sit for the paper, those who sat for the exams definitely did well.

“The excellent results obtained, despite the trying times of Covid-19 lockdowns, is much appreciated, and credit goes to all Diwan’s volunteers, teachers, students and parents for their concerted efforts to retain and maintain high standards,” he said.

On May 14, Santokh had written about obstacles faced by students taking minority languages in the opinion column of The Star.

He urged the Education Ministry to look into the matter urgently, and deal with school administrators who continued to deprive students of their basic rights, that was enshrined in the National Philosophy of Education and the Federal Constitution.

Santokh said the Punjabi language paper was offered as part of the Malaysian public examinations since pre-independence days.

He had said that although it was not on the list of vernacular languages in the national curriculum, it was still offered in the PT3 and SPM examinations.

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