Education – How to be top

What works in education: the lessons according to McKinsey
From The Economist
Oct 18th 2007

THE British government, says Sir Michael Barber, once an adviser to the former prime minister, Tony Blair, has changed pretty much every aspect of education policy in England and Wales, often more than once. “The funding of schools, the governance of schools, curriculum standards, assessment and testing, the role of local government, the role of national government, the range and nature of national agencies, schools admissions”–you name it, it’s been changed and sometimes changed back. The only thing that hasn’t changed has been the outcome. According to the National Foundation for Education Research, there had been (until recently) no measurable improvement in the standards of literacy and numeracy in primary schools for 50 years.

England and Wales are not alone. Australia has almost tripled education spending per student since 1970. No improvement. American spending has almost doubled since 1980 and class sizes are the lowest ever. Again, nothing. No matter what you do, it seems, standards refuse to budge (see chart). To misquote Woody Allen, those who can’t do, teach; those who can’t teach, run the schools.

Why bother, you might wonder. Nothing seems to matter. Yet something must. There are big variations in educational standards between countries. These have been measured and re-measured by the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) which has established, first, that the best performing countries do much better than the worst and, second, that the same countries head such league tables again and again: Canada, Finland, Japan, Singapore, South Korea.

Those findings raise what ought to be a fruitful question: what do the successful lot have in common? Yet the answer to that has proved surprisingly elusive. Not more money. Singapore spends less per student than most. Nor more study time. Finnish students begin school later, and study fewer hours, than in other rich countries.

Now, an organisation from outside the teaching fold–McKinsey, a consultancy that advises companies and governments–has boldly gone where educationalists have mostly never gone: into policy recommendations based on the PISA findings. Schools, it says*, need to do three things: get the best teachers; get the best out of teachers; and step in when pupils start to lag behind. That may not sound exactly “first-of-its-kind” (which is how Andreas Schleicher, the OECD’s head of education research, describes McKinsey’s approach): schools surely do all this already? Actually, they don’t. If these ideas were really taken seriously, they would change education radically.

Begin with hiring the best. There is no question that, as one South Korean official put it, “the quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers.” Studies in Tennessee and Dallas have shown that, if you take pupils of average ability and give them to teachers deemed in the top fifth of the profession, they end up in the top 10% of student performers; if you give them to teachers from the bottom fifth, they end up at the bottom. The quality of teachers affects student performance more than anything else.

Yet most school systems do not go all out to get the best. The New Commission on the Skills of the American Workforce, a non-profit organisation, says America typically recruits teachers from the bottom third of college graduates. Washington, DC recently hired as chancellor for its public schools an alumna of an organisation called Teach for America, which seeks out top graduates and hires them to teach for two years. Both her appointment and the organisation caused a storm.

A bias against the brightest happens partly because of lack of money (governments fear they cannot afford them), and partly because other aims get in the way. Almost every rich country has sought to reduce class size lately. Yet all other things being equal, smaller classes mean more teachers for the same pot of money, producing lower salaries and lower professional status. That may explain the paradox that, after primary school, there seems little or no relationship between class size and educational achievement.

McKinsey argues that the best performing education systems nevertheless manage to attract the best. In Finland all new teachers must have a master’s degree. South Korea recruits primary-school teachers from the top 5% of graduates, Singapore and Hong Kong from the top 30%.

They do this in a surprising way. You might think that schools should offer as much money as possible, seek to attract a large pool of applicants into teacher training and then pick the best. Not so, says McKinsey. If money were so important, then countries with the highest teacher salaries–Germany, Spain and Switzerland–would presumably be among the best. They aren’t. In practice, the top performers pay no more than average salaries.

Nor do they try to encourage a big pool of trainees and select the most successful. Almost the opposite. Singapore screens candidates with a fine mesh before teacher training and accepts only the number for which there are places. Once in, candidates are employed by the education ministry and more or less guaranteed a job. Finland also limits the supply of teacher-training places to demand. In both countries, teaching is a high-status profession (because it is fiercely competitive) and there are generous funds for each trainee teacher (because there are few of them).

South Korea shows how the two systems produce different results. Its primary-school teachers have to pass a four-year undergraduate degree from one of only a dozen universities. Getting in requires top grades; places are rationed to match vacancies. In contrast, secondary-school teachers can get a diploma from any one of 350 colleges, with laxer selection criteria. This has produced an enormous glut of newly qualified secondary-school teachers–11 for each job at last count. As a result, secondary-school teaching is the lower status job in South Korea; everyone wants to be a primary-school teacher. The lesson seems to be that teacher training needs to be hard to get into, not easy.

Teaching the teachers

Having got good people, there is a temptation to shove them into classrooms and let them get on with it. For understandable reasons, teachers rarely get much training in their own classrooms (in contrast, doctors do a lot of training in hospital wards). But successful countries can still do much to overcome the difficulty.

Singapore provides teachers with 100 hours of training a year and appoints senior teachers to oversee professional development in each school. In Japan and Finland, groups of teachers visit each others’ classrooms and plan lessons together. In Finland, they get an afternoon off a week for this. In Boston, which has one of America’s most improved public-school systems, schedules are arranged so that those who teach the same subject have free classes together for common planning. This helps spread good ideas around. As one educator remarked, “when a brilliant American teacher retires, almost all of the lesson plans and practices that she has developed also retire. When a Japanese teacher retires, she leaves a legacy.”

Lastly, the most successful countries are distinctive not just in whom they employ so things go right but in what they do when things go wrong, as they always do. For the past few years, almost all countries have begun to focus more attention on testing, the commonest way to check if standards are falling. McKinsey’s research is neutral on the usefulness of this, pointing out that while Boston tests every student every year, Finland has largely dispensed with national examinations. Similarly, schools in New Zealand and England and Wales are tested every three or four years and the results published, whereas top-of-the-class Finland has no formal review and keeps the results of informal audits confidential.

But there is a pattern in what countries do once pupils and schools start to fail. The top performers intervene early and often. Finland has more special-education teachers devoted to laggards than anyone else–as many as one teacher in seven in some schools. In any given year, a third of pupils get one-on-one remedial lessons. Singapore provides extra classes for the bottom 20% of students and teachers are expected to stay behind–often for hours–after school to help students.

None of this is rocket science. Yet it goes against some of the unspoken assumptions of education policy. Scratch a teacher or an administrator (or a parent), and you often hear that it is impossible to get the best teachers without paying big salaries; that teachers in, say, Singapore have high status because of Confucian values; or that Asian pupils are well behaved and attentive for cultural reasons. McKinsey’s conclusions seem more optimistic: getting good teachers depends on how you select and train them; teaching can become a career choice for top graduates without paying a fortune; and that, with the right policies, schools and pupils are not doomed to lag behind.

  1. #1 by Chong Zhemin on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 8:07 am

    Education – how to be top?

    Bring back meritocracy to our education system. Abolish the matriculation and let all malaysians compete fairly for a place in university.

  2. #2 by Taikor on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 8:44 am

    Channel NewsAsia: Major survey ranks Singapore’s education among the world’s best.

  3. #3 by k1980 on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 9:12 am

    …the McKinsey report had studied the education system of many countries. He said: “And the conclusion they came to is not whether your classes are big or small, whether you have tests or you don’t have tests, but what is the quality of the teachers and how quickly you put things right when it goes wrong and how you get good quality teachers. ”

  4. #4 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 9:39 am

    Yes the crux of it is good teachers but as the report says, its not so simple. From the making to maintaining and improving good teachers, the processs is highly unscientific. There is no simple system to use because too many measurements are subjective but the problem is good teachers are needed by one simple number – in large numbers.

    Large number demand and unsystematic supply problem – its as tough has chaos theory.

    Its also why our system cannot get very good in the end because it compounds a tough problem with a very flawed system – our NEP system.

    The issue is not that our system will just generate average poor students for a long time but that it will also produce an elitist group of bumiputras with unparallel advantage over their peers. These privilleged few worsen our society as a whole as we entrenched the idea of privilleged and fate rather than self-reliance and responsibilities.

    The end result – bigger and bigger gap between the elite bumis and the average. Its not unsustainable but its highly unjust and immoral…

  5. #5 by Libra2 on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 9:58 am

    In Malaysia, the high achievers in SPM and STPM and universities do not become teachers.
    Let’s not kid ourselves – those with mediocre results end up as teachers. Just check and you will find those with GGPA of slightly more than 2.0 ending up as teachers.

  6. #6 by k1980 on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 11:42 am

    Wah! Our great education system has made us a space POWER!!!!

  7. #7 by bystander on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 12:02 pm

    Our education system is not based on meritocracy let alone selecting the best and educated brains as teachers. Our current majority batch of principals and teachers are HP6, lazy, AWOL all the time and only concerned with providing tuition to make money. Where is that commitment? The so-called noble profession does not exist in Malaysia anymore compared to my period 30 years ago. Even at univs level, there is so much politiking and discrimination. Not only univs do not have the best students they have only HP6 professors. Nowadays our education only teaches doa at school levels and islamic studies at univs. Little wonder we only produce useless and unemployable graduates instead of world beaters. But it is not their fault. It is the fault of the UMNOputra controlled gomen and politicians which have plunged our standards so far down the abyss that it will take another 20 years to correct if only they accept the failures NOW.
    But then because of racial politics, UMNo will continue to deny this failure. The DENIAL SYNDROME is very pervasive malaise among the malays. UMNo will say the McKinsey report/study is not accurate and relevant to malaysia. They will insist Sinagpore paid him to write such a report. To umnoputras, everything is ok in malaysia.

  8. #8 by Justicewanted on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 12:43 pm

    Our public universities will never be the top as long as they are managed and run by politicians, cronies and bozos.

  9. #9 by HJ Angus on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 1:28 pm

    Our low standard of education is caused by a combination of just 2 factors:

    The parasitic synergy of the NEP and Ketuanan Melayu policies.

  10. #10 by AhPek on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 1:31 pm

    How to get first class education from schools? Mckinsey’s recommendations based on Pisa’s findings highlights an a priori truth and that is “Get the best teachers;get the best out of teachers, and step in when pupils start to lag behind.”
    And how does our Education Ministry perform if we rate them according to this criteria?
    (1) Get the best teachers for instance. To what extent are we measuring up to this? A very simple answer is take a look, at our teacher’s training college and lo and behold what do we have? Almost 100% trainees of one race!!!
    (2) Get the best out of teachers, the second example.Go into some of the schools and take a look at teachers chosen to teach English or teach maths in the medium of English. And lo and behold
    what do we find? That teachers can hardly speak English are put there, purportedly to give chance for teachers of a particularly race to benefit from the special allowance to teach in English as some claim.
    (3)Step in when students start to lag. Where got students here lag one.If students of a particularly race fail to reach passing marks, all you have got to do is to instruct markers to lower passing grades!!

  11. #11 by AhPek on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 1:44 pm

    And to top it all.Remember that great Krishamuddin waving triumphantly at the non Malays in a threatening gesture!! And he is our education minister!! And I ask you is there any hope that our education can ever come to measure up against the world’s best???

  12. #12 by k1980 on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 2:26 pm

    Finnish students begin school later, and study fewer hours, than in other rich countries. But the doddling bum wants Malaysian schools to begin at 7.30am and end at 4.30pm

  13. #13 by Godfather on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 4:38 pm

    Only one word is needed: MERITOCRACY.

    None of the social engineering sh!t started by Mahathir and currently continued by the den of thieves.

  14. #14 by HJ Angus on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 6:12 pm

    One important plank of the Singapore system is that every child is provided education to suit his/her ability.

    Though some parents do not like the idea, this enables slower students to follow a less demanding schedule but one can always catch up through ITE, Poly etc.

    In Malaysia we follow the one-stream system that produces illiterates after SPM.
    And many graduates too are too lowly qualified to be employed by the private sector.

    They end up with the government and PRESTO we get such people in the civil service, thereby perpetuating a vicious circle.

  15. #15 by justice_fighter on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 9:46 pm

    One of my friends teachs in a private local university and was shocked to find that many SPM top scorers (some with more than 10A1) have close-to-zero thinking skills!!

    All they know and care is about how to memorize formulas and score in the exam. He can easily fail more than 70% of the students by twisting even very simple questions. But, due to the university’s policy, he can’t fail too many of them. So marks are added for the sake of the policy to pass them. At the end, one that is supposed to get an ordinary degree may end up holding a 2nd upper degree. How pathetic!!!!

  16. #16 by sheriff singh on Saturday, 20 October 2007 - 11:52 pm

    The government wants to make Malaysia an education hub. To this end, it creates universities aplenty such that everyone and anyone who wants a degree can get one. Especially you know from which group.

    For the less fortunate who has to depend on external qualifications offered by overseas universities, the government has approved many foreign universities to offer and conduct their courses here. The courses can be completed totally locally at lower cost.

    But what is the problem?

    There does not seem to be any concern about quality. The focus is to create factories that churn out thousands of graduates, unemployable graduates to be exact, annually. All this to create “an education hub” with a target of 150,000 foreign students studying here. You already see the growing numbers of Africans and other foreigners here, many on our government’s generosity to help the less fortunate countries. These enter on very favourable “friendship” entry requirements.

    It is frightening when you meet these students and graduates who do not give you any confidence at all. Can you be blamed should you be wary of local graduates especially those who have “professional” degrees?

    Just look at the following list from the Times 2007 Rankings of UK Universities. See how many of the bottom ranked UK universities are conducting their courses in Malaysia.

    Are you not concerned that Bolehland is offering degrees aplenty from low-ranking universities with possibly low standards?

    This is of course a UK list. There are equivalent lists for Australia, USA and elsewhere.

    How then can we progress if we continue to look for and approve the low-ranking and mediocre universities?

    Whilst others look for the best, we look for the mediocre if not the worst. And we are very proud of our low rankings.

  17. #17 by alaneth on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 1:31 am

    We are unfortunately not attracting enough foreign talent. Just ask any people in Asia if they have an opportunity to study, they will choose Singapore first. They have quality, they have brand. Most importantly, they don’t discriminate – you have talent, you have BRAINS, you will be accepted there.

    Just look in our local universities – who are the foreign students? – Arabs from poorer countries, Sudanese, Middle Eastern students etc. Why can’t we attract other talented students from elsewhere??? Is there any biasness in enrolling students in local universities? Why are lecturers in local unversities mainly from Iraq, Sudan, Iran, Algeria, Syria, Pakistan, Libya & other similar nations?

    Where are the top students from China, India, ASEAN etc? – you are right – all in Singapore… We never change. We will never be top.

    In fact, we are losing most of our bright students overseas. They study overseas, work there, get married there, reside there….. Brain Drain again!

  18. #18 by alaneth on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 1:35 am

    When the top 100 world universities list comes out, the Govt will say ‘Unfair List, survey not accurate’ etc.

    If we never want to benchmark ourselves with the world, but benchmarking ourselves only internally, we are closed to competition. With that, we will slip badly down. Unfortunately that’s the culture of Malaysia – always saying international benchmarks are unfair. If we do not learn from our mistakes, we will suffer.

  19. #19 by disapointed86 on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 1:49 am

    sheriff singh:
    i dont really agree with your opinion..(no offence)…no doubt some universities are low-ranking(including mediocre) as what you’ve mentioned..but as least they are much better then our local universities..foreign Uni’s(UK,AUS,NZ,USA) have better standard compare to ours and most of them are rated in the world’s universities list..whereelse our universities that “MALAYSIAN” are proud of like…erm..UM?UTM? UPM? never even rated in the world ranking..and non-bumis hardly find a place with common courses in our local im a student itself..i believe courses conduct by foreign contries are much better..correct me if im wrong =)thanks

  20. #20 by disapointed86 on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 2:03 am

    i agree with what you’ve just wrote..most of the foreign students here are from poor countries…something to think about..”Why we fail to attract students from Singapore?USA? to study here?” the answer is obvious as there is no need for me to answer ?
    As for our education system here..i dont see any ways that we can improve our standard as the racist among the education body is becoming from bad to worst.. what can i conclude from my experience studying in malaysia.. “Brain” or good result are not the main priority to excel in education(unlike Singapore)..what a pathetic situation as we’ve already 50 years Merdeka?
    even the education minister dont have a good example or role model as a minister…what he knows is only waving his “keris” in a dumb manner.. minister in other countries dont do that…something to laugh about.. Look at the country of rising sun… they resign immediately as long as there is critics about his department from the ministers itself or from the public.. something we dont practise for here…monkeys are protecting each other…even though its wrong ..they still find a way to settle it any actions taken..”wait and see?” its like defending a robber who robs a bank? instead of prosecuting him..they find out why he rob..why he wants to rob..or maybe he needs money to treat his grandmother sick at home….all kinds of rubbish…

    oh our land ….

  21. #21 by sheriff singh on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 2:24 am


    (1) Why do we go for the mediocre low ranking ones? Why are we not attracting the better universities like everybody else?

    (2) If we bring over lousy foreign universities, then even our brightest students will not benefit as they will get poor quality education. As is mentioned in the blog, “There is no question that, as one South Korean official put it, “the quality of an education system cannot exceed the quality of its teachers.”

    The quality of our education, both locally and foreign provided ones, are of inferior quality.

    Lets face it. Our standards are lax. There is no quality control. Just mass produce.

  22. #22 by sheriff singh on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 2:37 am

    One Australian University boasted that it produced 250 Masters in ONE year alone from Malaysia. Another UK university 2,000 bachelors graduates. Both from ONE course alone.

    Attend some previews and information day sessions and you will find that they all claim 99% pass rate, the 1% drop out. Some even say its all assignment based, no examinations. You could easily get somebody to do all the work for you for a fee, see the classified adverts. Some are foreign universities (Aussie) and so are they better?

    Enough said. Its all about business. Big money is involved. It has become an industry, a foreign exchange earner.

  23. #23 by ktteokt on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 12:17 pm

    In Malaysia, we look and judge by colours, not results!!!!

  24. #24 by disapointed86 on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 2:44 pm

    sheriff singh:
    From your comment above, i can view a clear picture that you’re totally dissapointed with with the foreign Universities..can i ask u a question? how many foireign Unis/campus are there in Malaysia? i got few frens studying at the foreign Unis(locally)..and what they told me is..the lecturer don discrimninate skin colour? good class environment…and the standard pretty he is also a top student..
    As what u mentioned earlier about why we cant attract top universities…u mean top is top 3?or?? Harvard? if u’re the chairman of the university..will ya choose having a campus here or somewhere better like Australia?Japan? and most of the EU countries? pls take note that our country is categorized under terrorist country few years back..even if harvard(some other top unis) are having their campus here…”HOW MANY OF US AFFORD”?
    from my research..the school fees for the foreign Uni here is about 30k+/- per doubt its cheaper than going overseas due to the exchange rate…thanks..

  25. #25 by justice_fighter on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 3:41 pm

    To be more precise, in Malaysia, it’s judged by colours in public universities, and by $$$ in private universities.

  26. #26 by greenacre on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 5:50 pm

    They say Singapore has the Best Education. Well if this is true to the core then why in the world their students couldn’t string a simple question to ask their minister mentor Lee Kuan Yew a question? Perhaps They are parroting in which they are exceptional. Education and intelligence are two different things.

  27. #27 by disapointed86 on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 7:39 pm

    u mean $$ in private doubt that we need to spend more in private uni…but i think money alone cant guarantee you a place in private uni..(if there is no backdoor)..i’ve experienced it in the past where i applied for a Engineering course in a foreign campus available in Malaysia.. i was rejected despite of an average result i obtained..maybe avg 60?(not to say so good)..its not that im boasting foreign universities..just that i just want to share my experience with each of us here..thanks alot

  28. #28 by sheriff singh on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 10:27 pm

    You don’t need a foreign U campus here. But some foreign U do have campuses here. You can get their degree but they say XXXXX University, Malaysia Campus. See how far you can go with this. Did you know that some good lecturers from their HOME campus REFUSE to come here and their Malaysian campus fill their vacancies employing local and other contract lecturers? Similar is not the same and your locally obtained foreign degree, if they discriminate, won’t get you very far in their home countries. Only “laku” in Malaysia for whatever it is worth.

    That is why University of New South Wales Singapore Campus had to close shop because not many wanted to obtain the degree from Singapore. They prefer to enrol in Sydney for their degree.

    Having said this, many TOP foreign universities have set up shop in Singapore e.g. INSEAD, the University of Chicago, Johns Hopkins, Duke, Manchester, offering quality programmes.

    You should do more research as to whether the standard here is the same as that in the UK or Australia. There was one Aussie U in Australia whom I know do NOT accept transfer students from their Malaysian programme because the standard is different. You have to complete it entirely in Malaysia.

    Do your homework and you will be surprised to see how low quality the study materials are. Many of the lecturers are local but if you have paid good money for an Aussie of UK degree, you should get precisely that (like the NSWales case). Not some other version.

    Many graduates who obtained their foreign degrees locally dare not say they did so. They are shy. Many employers laugh at some of these degrees. Ask around and you will find out the real truth.

    Enough said. Caveat emptor.

  29. #29 by shaolin on Sunday, 21 October 2007 - 11:20 pm

    Malaysia’s Education System is the Best in the World becoz Malay
    students and scholars Must be protected by the Matriculation System so that they can enter local varsiti to obtain Basic, Master
    and P. hD degrees by the so called the Protected Species of the
    Majority Group!!

    Minority Groups in Malaysia Must spoonfeed and protect the
    Majority Group by providing them the ‘Walking Stick Policy’ so that
    they can survive to compete with other races of the minority Groups!!

    Whereas China has 56 Races and the Majority Groups Must protect
    the weaker Minority Groups and the country has complete Legal
    Ordinance and Laws to guard them well. Malaysia just on the
    CONTRARY!! Majority Group Must be Protected by Minority Groups
    because they are Too Weak to stand on their two feet and Must
    also be spoonfed!!

  30. #30 by disapointed86 on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 4:10 am

    sheriff singh:
    i believe NSW closed down recently is due to the low population of student as a result of strong competition from lots of top universities in Singapore? As what you’ve just mentioned…you know an Aussie Uni do NOT accept transfer students from their Malaysian programme because the standard is different. You have to complete it entirely in Malaysia. So far i had never encounter such cases..can i ask u there any different the certificate obtain locally here(from foreign uni/campus) and the one obtain overseas? No matter what, do you agree that the foreign campus set up here have a better standard compare to our “OWN” local Universities? i believe it does because what i can see is that they got better facilities(all aspect) taking example of SWINBURNE in Sarawak..

  31. #31 by W.O or Wilson on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 8:45 am

    I hate to be an elitist, but a browse of the comments on the blog is a disturbing read indeed. Sentences that don’t make sense, serious grammatical flaws, errors in vocabulary…the inability to construct logical and flowing discourses, is this reflective of the standard of education we’re talking about in Malaysia?

  32. #32 by megaman on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 10:26 am

    Hi Wilson,

    This is the INTERNET. I believe most of the posters and bloggers are more than capable of stringing grammatically correct Queen’s English when they are required to. However, in the online community it tends to be a more laissez-fare environment and the emphasis is more on the actual message and content and not a grammars and spellings.

    So do continue reading but maybe be a bit more lenient on your judgment of the content as well as the formatting.

  33. #33 by HJ Angus on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 10:51 am

    I think we should not just simply rubbish all local colleges because the local universities rank so lowly on the international rankings.

    My son and daughter transferred back to Malaysia after O and A levels respectively to Crescendo College in JB and IMU in KL.

    My daughter went to Canada after the medical course and now works there and my son is studying law at King’s College after A levels.

    I would recommend Crescendo to any student who wants to do A levels in one year as the lecturers are quite good and the college is not really profit-driven.

  34. #34 by ngahc on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 10:51 am

    Singapore open their education door wide open and wellcome top students from China, India and Asean. There want these foreign top students to compete with local for the sake of raising overall education standards.

    Our local universities don’t even allow equal competition and equal opportunity for all races. Unemployed graduate is the products from these local universities.

    Malaysia is not well prepared for the knowledge economy and globalisation. The ranking of world universities of our UM or UKM as opposed to Singapore NUS speak for itself.

  35. #35 by HJ Angus on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 11:04 am

    In fact many local colleges provide excellent facilities for students to study law and accounting to prepare for external professional courses like Law and Accounting.

    But of course we really need better quality inputs for the local universities if we are to improve.

  36. #36 by cheeyong on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 1:18 pm

    Hi all, Guan Eng has a good say on education, can go to DAP website for his statement. Again where is the govt when it comes to awarding good smart students a scholarship based on good results? Instead they just award those matriculation students only

  37. #37 by bystander on Monday, 22 October 2007 - 8:21 pm

    There is no 2 ways about it. Our education is not only bias but racist. Lets face the truth. Scholarship is only awarded to bumis irrespective of their standards. Thats why our gomen/education system resort to matriculation for bumis so that there is no comparison and the passing marks can be lowered/adjusted to fit the numbers. In accounting terms this is called fiddling.

  38. #38 by disapointed86 on Wednesday, 24 October 2007 - 1:34 am

    Speaking about matriculation? its just to help those “BUMIS”..Imagine what if the government abolish matriculation? how many bumis will end up in University?(through the correct channel)..i dont dare to think nor imagine about it..The education system in Malaysia is hopeless including the edu. minister itself..1 thing i want to tell all those smart student out there.. dont be stingy to spend some money doing your study overseas.. work there and dont come point to server such government we have today..cheers..

  39. #39 by ktteokt on Thursday, 25 October 2007 - 8:27 am

    What is the purpose of churning out so many “graduates” when they are all empty “nut-shells” and a burden to society when they throw away their school bags.

  40. #40 by bardophile on Monday, 29 October 2007 - 5:45 am

    Where might one be able to find the full text of the mckinsey report?

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