Why is Malaysia’s Education System Still Lagging Behind Its Neighbors?

by Alexandrea Roman on May 13, 2016

By 2025, Malaysia aims to be an international hub of education, but the country has struggled to raise its international education standards in the past several years. Surprisingly, it’s not the lack of budget that caused the problem. Malaysia spends roughly RM 55B or 3.8% of its GDP on education, more than twice the average 1.8% in other ASEAN nations. And yet, it remains at the bottom third of Global Rankings according to the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) two years in a row.

“Malaysia spends RM55 billion in education. Twice the average of other ASEAN nations.”

So what could be the problem? The Ministry of Education found that the lack of autonomy in the education system is a major hindrance to growth. The high level of centralisation in the Malaysian education system left schools with limited freedom when it comes to decision-making, allowing them small space to evolve and improve the quality of education in their institutions.

To address problems and improve Malaysia’s education system, the Ministry launched the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025. One of MEB’s major goals is to increase decision making by improving accountability and transparency in every educational institution in the country.

But in order for these universities and institutions to attain increased autonomy, they need to enforce better governance and accountability practices.

“Malaysia’s education system needs to leverage on ICT to improve decision making and accountability.”

They need an efficient tool that can help improve the decision making process and accountability without straining their budget or compromising security. One such tool is Azeus Convene, an easy to use board meeting software that streamlines the entire meeting process to save time, effort, and cost while ensuring accountability and good corporate governance. With Convene, your university or institution can keep archives of checkpoint meetings along with their accompanying files, making them easily accessible whenever the need arises. Convene also records all decisions, actions, and activities in searchable logs for future reference. For a long-term and multi-milestone project like MEB, these capabilities are very important because otherwise, it’s easy to lose track of what has been achieved and what is still left to accomplish.

Here’s an Idea! Beyond being a digital meeting solution, Convene can also be used as a training and educational tool given its features for live presentation, remote meeting, and document collaboration. This makes Convene a suitable answer for another MEB thrust, which is to leverage ICT for learning by investing on ICT solutions for groups with specific needs, such as rural schools. Because of population migration to cities, rural schools are encountering the danger of being closed down due to under enrollment. If this happens, students left behind in rural areas will be unable to go to school and get the education they need – unless there’s an alternative way to access it, like online. As long as they have internet connection and a mobile device running Convene, students can read educational materials, work with fellow students, submit assignments and answer exams regardless of where they are located.

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