Dr Mah: Decision to allow only SPM, STPM students to return to school 'balanced'

PETALING JAYA: The decision to allow only SPM and STPM students to return to schools is a “balanced” one to minimise risk and enable students to pursue their tertiary studies, says Datuk Dr Mah Hang Soon.

The Deputy Education Minister said the number of students who are presently allowed in schools only make up about 20% of the student population.

He added that opening schools to all students would lead to a greater risk of exposure to Covid-19.

Dr Mah also said that postponing the SPM and STPM exams would further delay and disrupt the plans of teenagers for tertiary education.

“This is a difficult dilemma, but a balanced decision had to be taken by the Education Ministry. To minimise risk, only students sitting for the SPM and STPM exams have to return to schools," he said

“Any postponement (of the exams) would further delay and disrupt the future of our children, ” added Dr Mah in a Facebook post Saturday (Jan 23).

He added that all schools are to follow stringent standard operating procedures, such as wearing face masks and physical distancing.

He added that schools will also be closed immediately if there are Covid-19 cases detected in their students.

“This is a balanced decision - one that minimises risks and yet takes into consideration the grouses, suggestions and views of all parties, which include the students, parents, teachers, and others.

“I know that this decision cannot fulfil the wants of every party, but we at the Education Ministry believe this to be the best one, ” he said.

He added that the Education Ministry is also working with broadcasters RTM and Media Prima as well as other television stations to offer educational programmes on television channels for free.

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