New school curriculum to reinforce basic skills

PUTRAJAYA: Elements in the new school curriculum can address Malaysia’s sub-standard performance in the Programme for International Students Assessment (Pisa), says the Education Minister.

Fadhlina Sidek said reading, writing and numeracy skills will be emphasised in the 2027 School Curriculum.

“We are aware that Malaysia’s achievements in the international assessment ‘Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS)’ and Pisa have not yet reached the top third position as desired in the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025.

“The Education Ministry has also examined the World Bank Report which shows that there is still learning poverty among students that needs attention.

“The new curriculum needs to focus back on the basic literacy skills of reading, writing and counting (3M) so that this learning poverty can be reduced,” she said in her speech on the 2027 School Curriculum yesterday.

Fadhlina said the new curriculum will also see the 3M being the key focus for Year One and Year Two pupils (to be known as Level I), together with character development.

“The ministry is also committed to ensuring that students master the basic literacy of 3M as early as possible to enable them to be ready to follow learning at the next level,” she said.

She added that early intervention will be given to help students who have problems mastering literacy and numeracy skills before students move to Level II (Year Three and Year Four) and Level III (Year Five and Year Six).

“Pupils will go through learning experiences in an entertaining way so that they are interested in following formal learning and motivated to come to school,” she said.

Fadhlina said in the meantime, the ministry was implementing various initiatives such as the Literacy and Numeracy Program- me, the Guidance Module and the STEM Executive Consultation Programme to address the learning gap.

“This learning gap is our com- mon issue and needs to be addressed in a different and more creative way to have a more significant impact,” she added.

On Tuesday, Education deputy director-general (school opera- tions) Azman Adnan said Malaysia’s Pisa scores for reading, mathematics and science were much lower than the OECD average. He said most other countries also dropped with students the world over being affected by “learning loss” due to the Covid- 19 pandemic.

Fadhlina also said the new cur- riculum would see school-based assessment becoming more flexi- ble.“The teacher will evaluate the learning process that the student goes through holistically.

“The focus is no longer on task results alone. In this way, the teaching and learning process will be more flexible, fun and meaningful for teachers and stu- dents,” she added

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