NASSAU: Malaysia on Wednesday contributed US$200,000 (RM750,000) in a bid to help fellow Commonwealth countries better the quality of education and training as it shared the measures being taken to elevate the quality of national education.
Addressing the 19th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers (19CCEM) here, Malaysian Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin (pic) said Kuala Lumpur realised the tremendous potential in experience- and knowledge-sharing.
In this regard, he expressed Malaysia's dedication to help the Commonwealth of Learning (COL), the recipient of the contribution, achieve its goals.
COL, which has its headquarters in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada, encourages the development and sharing of open learning and distance education knowledge, resources and technologies.
"Malaysia looks forward towards further engagement, cross-fertilisation of ideas and smart partnerships between Commonwealth members," said Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister.
Muhyiddin told conference attendees gathered at the Atlantis Resort Convention Centre on Paradise Island here that to elevate the quality of education, Malaysia was currently embarking on the most comprehensive education transformation exercise to date.
He highlighted the Malaysian education blueprints covering pre-school, basic education right through to tertiary and life-long learning under which multiple initiatives were being put in place in various areas.
"This includes strengthening basic literacy and numeracy, implementing curriculum that are benchmarked internationally, embedding higher order thinking skills (HOTS) as well as a strong focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)," he said.
Muhyiddin shed light on efforts to consolidate Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) offerings and pathways in bringing about greater clarity and efficiency, among other things.
"TVET is being positioned as the most important avenue for up scaling Malaysia's skilled human capital base as the country aspires to reconfigure the skilled workforce to remain competitive and innovative," he said.
Muhyiddin mentioned that Malaysia needed to have both the quality and quantity of STEM human capital that would enable the Southeast Asian nation to adopt the right economic model in order to achieve the longer term economic and societal aspirations.
He further said that the quality of Malaysian teachers, lecturers and academic leaders must be of a high standard, and that efforts were being made to ensure the right people of the desired "horsepower" and behaviour in the right jobs in driving transformation at various levels within the education delivery ecosystem.
Elaborating on the national education system that would take students from "cradle to career", he said it would help them achieve their potential, inculcate a love for lifelong learning, make them globally competitive, and prepare them for life.
Malaysia, he said, placed equal emphasis on nurturing balanced and holistic individuals who could meet extraordinary challenges, with the right ethics and morality and knowledge and skills to adapt and thrive in an ever-changing world.
"We'll instil an entrepreneurial mindset throughout Malaysias higher education system and create a system that produces graduates with a drive to create jobs, rather than to only seek jobs," he said.
The June 22-26 conference seeks to address a range of issues, including financing for education, ICT-based learning, curriculum, teacher training and programmes that lead to gainful employment as well as social and economic development.
It carries the theme of 'Quality Education for Equitable Development: Performance, Paths and Productivity'. - Bernama
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