While the abolishment of the Form 3 Assessment (PT3) examination could be good news for students nationwide, there could be something more behind the government’s decision to do so.
According to a report by The Vibes, industry sources revealed that Malaysia’s depleting coffers could possibly be a key factor behind the Education Ministry’s (KPM) move to axe another major national exam, after the Primary School Achievement Test (UPSR) was similarly scrapped just last year.
Industry experts have estimated that this move could save hundreds of millions of ringgit each year, which is a substantial amount as the country’s economy thrives to recover after being ravaged by Covid-19.
Speaking to the daily, a former examiner said he noted millions have been spent annually to conduct each national-level examination across the country, from preparing questions to implementing the logistics to arranging the marking of tens of thousands of papers.
“There is the cost for printing the exam papers, distributing them nationwide, and paying examiners to mark the answers, among others.”
“This is excluding the possibility of leaked papers, in which case a new set of questions have to be produced, printed, and distributed,” he was quoted as saying.
“You can ask other industry players, and I believe they will tell you the same. I feel the government has just run out of money, and that is why PT3 is being scrapped. It’s just that this is not being told to the public.” he added.
Meanwhile, another industry player, who is a former teacher heavily involved in preparing past examination papers, said she believes the Education Minister Datuk Mohd Radzi Md Jidin might have been pressured by “those in higher positions” into scrapping the exam.
“I think you can figure out for yourself who is the person in charge in Putrajaya,” she said.
“I just don’t see any other reason to abolish PT3 other than that the government is trying to save money.”
On 2 June, Education Ministry (KPM) has announced that the PT3 examination will be abolished effective this year.
Radzi said the assessments would be replaced with PBS that includes classroom-based (PBD), physical, sports and co-curricular, and psychometric assessments.