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Monday, January 18, 2016



UPSR 2016 - Score 8As

I've started seeing workbooks that says "Score 8As for UPSR" or something to that effect. This year I have a kid who will be sitting for the UPSR. He is among the first batch of kids who did the KSSR syllabus from Standard One. I thought the whole point of the KSSR syllabus was to move towards School Based Assessments and away from examinations. It seems like I have been wrong in my assumption.

In fact, now that the new formats have been announced, I have discovered that there are more papers, more subjective questions to test the kids critical thinking skills, more hours for some papers and more days for the exams (from 3 to 4). Since this will be the first year for the new syllabus, the kids are being drilled and prepared in ernest by the schools.

During the first week of school, the kids were briefed on the new exam and paper formats. We're talking about the first week of school! In the second week, they started doing some test papers. In the third week, they start staying back 3 extra days in school and Saturday will soon be a full schooling day. Extra curricular activities take up 1 day. That means the kid has to go to school from 7.45 am to 3.30 pm - 4.00 pm for 4 days in a week and attend school on Saturday from 7.45 am to 1.05 pm. There's also talk that the hours may be increased ie. the kids may have to start schooling at 7 am instead of 7.45 am. Nothing is confirmed yet so far but the idea is there isn't enough hours to drill and prepare the kids for UPSR 2016.

Many schools have also held talks for parents on the new format. (and it's only the start of the third week of back to school today).

In contrast, my other kid who sat for UPSR in 2014 and having been drilled in a similar fashion and is now attending a public secondary school, is more free. That other secondary school kid looks a lot more relaxed now compared to the primary school going child. The 14 year old is currently having it a lot easier than the 12 year old. Strange how the UPSR year for mere 12 year olds is like a pressure cooker.

So what do we  parents do about it? Many have flocked to private and international schools. Some decided to home school and for the rest who are in this regime. You either get all caught up in the whirlwind or you close one eye or both and say, "Its ok. Its only the UPSR. Who's even going to look at the paper when you attend a job interview years later." However, at the back of your mind, there may be this nagging thought or doubt that says "Am I doing the right thing for my child?" "How's he going to get into a good school if he can't compete with the rest?" Of course you don't have to ask this question if you have a secure financial future that allows you to send your child to any good school you like. To the rest? Well, its only 8 months more to UPSR 2016. Hang on in there!

Note: SK students sit for 6 papers while SJKC students sit for 8 papers. So you may see two versions of workbooks at the bookstores. A Score 6As version or a Score 8As one.


1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the info. I also heard about the new format. Very confusing and stress for students.

    ReplyDelete

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