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Wasting Money on ICT in Education – Is There a Better Way?

Kuala Lumpur, 24 June 2015 – It is encouraging that Deputy Education Minister P. Kamalanathan recently announced that the Ministry will be measuring the effectiveness of technology in education from the perspectives of schools and students. The 2013 AG’s report stated that less than 5% of all teachers use ICT on a daily basis, which is a cause for concern when all schools have been equipped with ICT equipment to scale up learning in Malaysia.

“The Ministry of Education (MOE) under the 1BestariNet initiative took on an ambitious task of connecting all government schools to high speed internet, equipping them with Chromebooks and virtual learning environments. While this is commendable, the execution of these policies leaves much to be desired and comes at a high cost,” commented Wan Saiful Wan Jan, CEO of IDEAS. “Last week, the 2014 AG Report stated that RM6.6 million was wasted on a spell-check software. Such wastage will continue to occur if everything continues to be planned centrally by the Ministry rather than be left to individual schools administration. The Ministry needs to decentralise power and allow schools to decide how best to do it.”

“This is not the first time that incorporating ICT into the education system has proved to be a waste of resources because it is centrally planned. Back in February, 2015, IDEAS reviewed the implementation and we released our report entitled, “ICT in Classroom learning: exploring the discrepancies between ideal conditions and current Malaysian policy.” We have already argued that central planning does not work, and that the Ministry even failed to provide good internet access to all schools,” said Wan Saiful.

“The review is a positive step forward. Once completed, the Ministry must release the findings of the review announced by YB Kamalanathan. Don’t hide it as a secret because there are many people and organisations who will want to help fix the problems if the Ministry opens the door to them,” observed Wan Saiful.

IDEAS Paper on ICT in Classrooms can be downloaded here : http://ideas.org.my/unit/policy-ideas-no-18-ict-in-classroom-learning-exploring-the-discrepancies-between-ideal-conditions-and-current-malaysian-policy/

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