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Friday, July 31, 2015

Tips For Choosing A Secondary School In Malaysia

This post is for those thinking of selecting public secondary schools, the SMKs and SMJKs. SMK = Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan while SMJK = Sekolah Menengah Jenis Kebangsaan. 

I have not included the Chinese Independant Schools or Private Schools but those going to these schools can still use the tips on how to choose by visiting the schools. This is the most important thing you can do in your selection. Whichever school you are thinking of sending your child to for his or her secondary school education, you should pay the school a personal visit.

When is the best time to do secondary school hunting?

The best time would be around July/August when you receive a list from school. You are required to select three from a given list of feeder schools.

Which secondary school should I choose? How do I choose?

Secondary school is when your child will be spending his or her teen years, the years of growing up into a young adult. So choosing a secondary school should not be taken lightly. Some go into a great deal of effort in choosing a primary school but when it comes to secondary school, they are more relaxed and don't do as much work as they did when selecting a primary school.

On the contrary, I think choosing a secondary school is equally important because the teen years is when your child will mature rapidly. So do make an effort to find the time to visit the schools just as you did when selecting primary school.

Think of a few school choices, then narrow down to 3 or 4 and make it a point to visit all those in your potential list. You can come up with a potential list from schools in the feeder list, schools near your house or schools with certain reputation. Visit the school, walk around the premise. Talk to the HM, teachers, parents, students, guards, canteen lady if possible. Look at the notice boards. Read the notices. Check out the canteen, the toilets and the classrooms and other facilities. These will give you a much better idea of whether the school is suitable for your child.

When you visit, try to visualize whether your child will fit in the school environment given his or her temperament (every child is different). Drive there during high traffic hours. Record the time you took and the distance. Check out the parking. Do this if you will be driving your child to school.

Decide what you want. Location vs Reputable School?

You must be clear in your mind what you want. If you go to a school near your house  you and your child will be able to save so much time. You can use this time for arranging for enrichment classes if the school is lacking in it.

However, if you select a reputable school, you may have to spend hours in traffic but perhaps you may need to worry less about truancy, gangsterism and wrong company etc.

My child wants to go to a certain school because all her friends are going there. Should I let her?

Although there may be a high temptation for you to send your child to a school where most of his or her friends are going due to your child's request, ask yourself whether this school is right for your child. If not, this should not be a criteria for selecting schools.

Related Posts:

1. Secondary School Application Process
2. Step By Step Process On How To Transfer Secondary School
3. Choosing A Secondary School In Malaysia

Useful Links:

Education In Malaysia
List of SMJKs
Chinese Independent School List
List of Secondary Schools In Malaysia
About Cluster Schools In Malaysia

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