We need free tertiary education for all


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We need free tertiary education for all
By Zan Azlee

Listening to the President of the United States, Barack Obama, give his State of the Union address can be pretty entertaining and boring at the same time.

It’s basically a time when the president of the country tells Congress everything that is right with this country, hence, the state of the Union. But sometimes, he outlines his annual agenda as well.

And one of the things that struck out to me in his speech last Tuesday is the fact that he is trying to persuade Congress to approve free education for community college students.

I have been an advocate for free education for quite a while now (ever since I’ve been a student!) and I think it makes sense because education is a right and not a privilege.

It seems that in Malaysia, education is almost like a privilege. Not all schools are equal and alike. Some are better than others in terms of infrastructure and teachers.

We have normal public schools, fully-residential schools, Mara Junior Colleges, BESTARIs and whatever not that polarises the education system instead of making all schools equal.

People resort to all kinds of ways to get into a school of their choice, like ‘borrowing’ different residential addresses, appealing to officials to be admitted into certain schools, etc.

And then there’s tertiary education in Malaysia. Although there are many scholarships to be obtained, they are still limited and not to mention that many follow racial quotas.

Even the entry to public universities are perceived to follow racial quotas and so many who aren’t included in the quota are forced to study in private institutions that cost even more.

And because of the cost, many will also be forced to forego tertiary education and head straight into the workforce. And that is not fair to the people. [Click to read the full article at English.AstroAwani.Com]

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