I only took 9 subjects for SPM
And I think I’m doing pretty fine.
The whole people taking over 20 subjects for SPM thing for the past few years have irked me. Seriously, I can see no reason why anyone needs to take so many subjects other than to show off.
From stories we hear and articles we read, it’s already quite obvious that getting many As doesn’t guarantee a scholarship – probably the only thing that really bank on your SPM results.
So why the fuss now that the Government has put a cap on 10 subjects?
I woke up this morning to read an article in The Star where Deputy Minister in the Prime Ministerâ€™s Department Datuk S.K. Devamany said that students were being penalised by not being allowed to take more subjects.
In the same article, DAP MP Teresa Kok said it was “suppresion of their rights to knowlege and talent”. Wah, a bit kua cheong right?
Anyway, Ms Kok is allowed her own opinion lah, but I think Devamany needs to have more discussions with his colleagues. In the NST, also published today, Education director-general Datuk Alimuddin Mohd Dom said that from next year onwards, there will only be four core subjects for students to allow them to have more choices with electives (I prefer it this way – last time, I was forced to take subjects I wasn’t interested in or had not benefit to my career aspirations).
Devamany was quoted in the article saying that the 10-subject cap would limit students ability to take language and religious based subjects.
I really am for the 10-subject cap because I think that puts all students on an equal platform. I don’t know how fair it is to compare a student who does 28 subjects and say, 12 subjects when it comes to offering scholarships. Because if say each does well in all the subjects he/she is taking, then he or she is still a “straight As student”.
I think DPM and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin got it right also when he said that this will give chances to students to be more active in extra-curricular activities. People need to realise that school is not just an academic environment. Your progressive years are spent in school – surely there are other skills and talents to be honed.
Not only that, all this obsession with tens of As show that people are putting so much emphasis on results (as we all know). I wonder if these students, their parents and some teachers realise that academic achievement is not indiciation of intelligence and intellectual ability?
So I say, stick to the 10 subjects cap. Forget about Ms Kok’s theory that sutdents these days are smarter and as such will be able to do much better in exams and get more As.
Because if that really is the case – and I am being my usual cynical self – then I say change the syllabus and teach subjects at a higher level.
Besides, 90% of students take less than 10 subjects anyway (compulsory is 6).
1.50pm Malaysian time (+8 GMT)