January 26, 2010

HPS list

I don’t know about you guys, but I think the idea of creating that High Performance School (HPS) list by the Malaysian government sucks. Isn’t that a form of discrimination? You identify who’s awesome, and give them incentives or shit like that, while the under-performers get nothing. It sends the wrong message to the young, don’t you guys think? That it is ok to stereotype, to discriminate, to discern who’s strong and who’s weak and give them preferential treatment.

Shouldn’t our children be taught how to treat everyone equal? How to help the needy? Sure enough, many think that the list and 1 million bucks would serve as a motivating factor for schools to work harder to get into the goddamn list. No doubt that the idea could probably work on some level… but in a bigger picture, I think this could cause a negative effect in the long term. For example, when a school fails to make into the list after putting enough effort to improve, it could also seriously jeopardize the morale of everyone involved. Not to mention the possibility of making the pupils feel inferior for being in a non-listed school. Parents on the other hand, will be more inclined to send/transfer their children to a listed school (kiasu mentality). The teaching staffs will also suffer some form of demotivation.

You see, you only mend the roof if it’s leaking. You don’t mend a perfectly good and non-leaking roof. It’ll be a waste of effort. Same thing applies, if those schools in the list are already that good, why would they need the 1 million bucks to enhance themselves? Shouldn’t the money go to those that needed the money most? I remember seeing headlines in the paper about schools asking for funds to fix their cracked walls, damaged desks/chairs, etc. Even my school once had to ask for donations from the alumni to renovate its facilities because it had gone to the stage of being dangerous to the students. How about that? I’m sure there are even more schools out there (esp the rural ones) that could use a little help to upgrade something.

Instead, I think the government should create an opposite list. Top under-performing schools of the year. Make it top 10 for each state. Then inject some PhD manpower into the schools as their personal consultant (since we have so many of those ‘meritus-meritus’), to review what went wrong and change the way they do things. Enforce KPI for the teachers and review their performance. Or perhaps to make things simpler, eat the humble pie and rope in some help from other top countries like Singapore or Australia. Ask them how do they do it. Pay them 200 trucks of sand for a contract to uplift our standard or whatever (our sand is pretty much useless to us anyway if our people are stupid and incompetent).

I’m just a stinking engineer and this is what I can come up with. I’m sure there are enough genius around to be able to come up with something even better. That HPS idea? That is so amateur. It’ll get us to nowhere.

michaelooi  | thoughts  | 

19 Comments to “HPS list”

  1. Hawk says:

    Its about a return of investment. If you invest in high performing schools, you are more likely to get a better return on your investment. Using the money to employ good teachers to teach in poorly performing schools doesn’t mean the school’s performance will increase, it may not even increase at all. So you may just end up wasting time, energy and money.

    The general idea is that you give to people who deserve it and can make the best of it. You don’t give to people who can’t do shit, that’s the problem with our country to begin with (NEP).

    That said, there’s no point in creating a HPS, when the metrics of “High Performance” itself is meaningless to education as a whole. So what if a school has lots of people that score well, it doesn’t mean the students were educated properly.

  2. MaN|acZ says:

    Mike, you really have a point there. But, I think the government should also provided more information how to improve the schools to become HPS.

  3. MT says:

    Normal la…. Malaysia whaaaaat…. Its like the THES rankings for universities worldwide. Yes granted, there is a certain amount of bias in the rankings but still, it does hold some degree of truth to it. What did our “geniuses” do when our “great” universities slipped in the rankings? Shout blood and murder i.e. its a biased system that favours the Westerners, and come up with their own ranking i.e. SETARA, which is chaired entirely by Malaysian “geniuses”…. :|

    A point to ponder; if the rankings are so Westerner biased, then how come NUS and NPT (S’pore), University of Tokyo and Kyoto University (Japan), even Chulalongkorn University (Thailand) all made it to the top 100?

  4. Quinn says:

    I agree….We’re becoming a lot like Singaporeans in terms of education system. They have streaming system, they best just get better and the not so good one remain in a secondary part unless he/she can climb back up. I think it’s so unfair. Shouldn’t everyone get the same level of attention????

  5. michaelooi says:

    hawk – Well said man. The whole idea is to get our children proper education. This is not about competition, or who has better score. What a moronic approach.

    maniac – How to make it to HPS aa? Score well lor.

    MT – Well, I think I may have struck a bullseye here. Some of the folks in east Malaysia are already starting to make some noise there. In TheStar today. Here.

    quinn – Singapore is like that meh? They have a list also?

  6. ShaolinTiger says:

    Typical Malaysian style, makes the strong stronger and the weak weaker. It’s the communist way.

  7. Hawk says:

    Quinn, giving everyone the same level of attention is a bad idea. You end up making everyone move at the pace of the slowest member. Thinking that everyone should be treated “fairly” has crippled the American Education system, look at the idiots they produce now.

    Streaming works for both sides, but it has to be implemented properly. You put a bunch of geniuses in one class, and you can move at a much faster pace, then you put the lesser people in lower classes. This doesn’t mean you abandon them, instead this allows you to cater to their needs instead, so that they can improve.

  8. woody says:

    Looking at our current education system and methodology, the force feeding method , by logic , we would have landed a man on Mars long time ago. But why not ? We only managed to produce a bunch of moron that do not even know how to queue, or even using toilet properly.

    The fact it, our system stopped treating our kids like human, more like forced fed poultry to be sent out to slaughter.


  9. mott says:

    I think it’s not just the Govt. Parents too have adopted this kiasuism. Everyone is enrolling their kids in A, B, C – Z of extra curriculum. Every end of school day/weekend is filled to the brim. Who’s playing now?

    Nvm that. Malaysian Universities are in a deplorable position. In the 70s they were quite highly regarded..sad to say, in this new century, it has literally gone to the dogs. Graduates I’ve worked with, aren’t able to prepare a simple “Thank You” letter. What more, a business proposal.

  10. mott says:

    ok..i was off the topic.

    again. today is a stupid day for me. :(

  11. michaelooi says:

    ST – The wrong way.

    Hawk – I think in our case, they didn’t actually put ‘all geniuses in one class’. It is more like, they come up with a list of institutions which they think are good, and work from there. Padahalnya, we don’t have many geniuses to begin with. (ironically, one of the math prodigy got busted for distributing illegal drugs a few weeks ago)…

    woody – They did send a guy to space though, and some molotov cocktails to other gods’ doorsteps…

    mott – It’s that time of the month…

  12. Hawk says:

    Michael, actually my primary school is on that list :P It was a great school when I was there, I’m not too sure about the management now.

  13. EinsamSoldat says:

    You all got it wrong… End the day what HPS or watever project shit, it is always about filling up the coffers :P

  14. woody says:

    Oh, that space tourist ? That’s freaking coming out of my tax money.

  15. Ahmad Fadli says:

    I see a lot of redundancies. First Sekolah Bestari, second Sekolah Kluster,up next High Performance School. And some schools belongs to those 3 categories at thesame time. Like MCKK. Can’t help it I’m from STAR Ipoh.

    A lot of Tamil schools in the rural estates are lacking a lot of facilities.So who’s gonna give them money? Hallo is Mr Samy Vellu at home?

  16. michaelooi says:

    Ahmad Fadli – Mr Samy is at home alright. All the time. Never been to the office… (if you get my drift) ;-)

  17. aomar says:

    Morning michael,
    i am an occasional blog-hopper so pardon my long views ;)

    Malaysians certainly deserve better educational crutches from the gov. why? Quite a majority of us are people who invisibly live under the not so glamorous poverty radar, which is in line with the low pays & all. The ever increasing hidden fees etc for a child to be fed with formal education are a fact well known & are one of the many pre-contributing factors to the long list of school dropouts amongst these poor souls of the hardcore poor. Home schooling/tutoring is out of reach & will forever be an unaccomplished wet dream. Well equipped & grand international/private schools? Fat chance.

    Coming from a remotely-sounding kampung name, which from my point of view  geographically not too remote, i am blessed to be handpicked & serve my time in the 3rd ranked high performing school (residential school category) for two wonderful years. But before I am being judged of being over-sentimental of my past & the school, I need to stress that i did not fully agree with the list as few illustrious schools with rich tradition of educational & whatever excellence there is are being left out but i.m.h.o, it is high time for the authority in question, which is the gov  to provide us the official school ranking for all to see. Are these schools really are the high performance type or is it all just hype? We malaysians WILL BE THE JUDGE.

    Then again, news etc can be spun but I personally think we are all intelligent enough not to let anybody or perhaps, a somebody to screw & insult it, right?

  18. tohff7 says:

    My ex secondary school was in the HPS list (SMS Muzaffar Syah, a boarding school). I would definitely say that my school deserved it. The school and its teaching staff have worked very hard and very long to reach the achievement today

  19. michaelooi says:

    tohff7 – Quote Yucko the clown – “WHOOOOO GIVES CRAP?”

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