Fadhlina: Steps taken to prevent omission of co-curriculum scores from varsity applications

KUALA LUMPUR: Efforts to safeguard the university application process by upgrading the data systems of private schools not under the Education Ministry's purview are being carried out, says Fadhlina Sidek.

The Education Minister told the Dewan Rakyat on Thursday (July 11) this was important to ensure that these institutions' data controls are similar to those of schools under the ministry.

This follows the incident in which SPM candidates' Psychometric Assessment and Assessment of Physical Activity Co-curriculum (PAJSK) data had been affected, causing their university applications to fail.

"Currently, the system (integration) process is still ongoing.

"The ministry will cooperate with the Higher Education Ministry to coordinate PAJSK scores to ensure students' data is not affected in the future.

"We (the ministry) take full responsibility to ensure that the incident will not recur," she told Wan Razali Wan Nor (PN-Kuantan) during Minister's Question Time.

ALSO READ: Ministry to review co-curriculum assessment data of 2023 SPM candidates

Wan Razali wanted to know what measures the ministry was taking to help students who failed to get places in their first-choice universities because their PAJSK scores had been inadvertently left out.

A parent in Pahang reportedly claimed that her child failed to secure their first choice in the Central University Admission Unit (UPU) application.

The parent claimed that upon investigation, the error was found in her child's PAJSK score.

As a result, her child and other students from the school failed to secure their first-choice universities through their UPU applications.

Their school emerged as a top performer in the recent SPM examinations.

PAJSK scores, which count for 10% of the evaluation, are considered along with exam results when applying for tertiary education through UPU.

Fadhlina also noted that PAJSK scores for private schools were not under her ministry's purview but previously managed through the Student Database Application System (ADPM).

This system was the same one used in schools under the ministry, she said.

However, Fadhlina said the ministry needed to develop an integrated system with stringent controls to prevent breaches and to allow full data management.

Fadhlina added that the ministry had introduced the Integrated Assessment Management System for the 2023/24 school session.

"For schools not under the ministry, PAJSK scores are collected and submitted offline using a standard template provided by the ministry.

"These scores are then submitted to the Student Admission Division of Public Universities under the Higher Education Ministry for university admission purposes.

"Until all data can be integrated, schools not under the ministry's administration will need to temporarily use this offline method.

"The Education Ministry has taken follow-up actions and remains committed to ensuring all PAJSK scores are properly managed and accounted for," she said.

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