Establishing a Professional, Apolitical Educational Consultative Council.

By:

Megat Mohamed Amin Megat Mohamed Nor

Affiliations:

IKRAM

Policy Code:

3f Education

Problem Statement:

Political considerations often override the educational concerns. Politics, with a certain set of values and power at the centre, often alters the curriculum and contents according to their stance and opinions in contradiction to that envisaged by the educators. The role of government in the provision of quality education cannot be overemphasized. But often our experience seems to indicate that many of the decisions or changes in policies, before certain policies or curriculum is fully implemented, are politically motivated in contradiction to the opinions of education experts.

Value(s) and Belief(s):

Educational implementation requires at least two interconnected components. First, is the leadership, managerial and administrative part. Second, more importantly is the content of the policies or the desired outcomes. Curriculum design, development, and evaluation must be the sole responsibility of the experts or scholars, perhaps in the form of an professional educational consultative council with minimal political interference.
Experience shows that with increase proximity of politics in our education, the value of the whole system is certainly brought down to low standards. Today we hear a lot about ‘saffronisation’ of education. Politics, with a certain set of values and power at the center, brings about a revision of syllabus and alters the curriculum and contents according to their stance and opinions.
Policies implementation, particularly in the field of education, requires considerable amount of time in order to ensure smooth and consistent outcome. The role of government in the provision of quality education cannot be overemphasized. But often our experience seems to indicate that many of the decisions or changes in policies, before certain policies or curriculum is fully implemented, are politically motivated in contradiction to the opinions of education experts. Political considerations often override the educational considerations.

Proposal of Solution:

The consultative panel of experts or scholars with adequate experience in education and holding leadership positions, are responsible for establishing and implementing education policy. The differences between what is desired in education (curriculum, instruction and assessment) and what is implemented has been a constant problem in education. In order to reduce this gap, we propose the following:-
1. Formation of the professional, ‘apolitical’ educational consultative council consisting of relevant experts in specified fields within the Ministry of Education or otherwise;
2. Explicitly define the role of government and the roles of the consultative council in the process of implementation so that there may be minimal political interference or interventions;
3. Increase the role of our youth in the formation of educational policies;
4. Empower the role our educational administrators, teachers and perhaps the student themselves in policy and curriculum design, decisions and implementation. Basically, it will position education professionalism in place.

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