International Conference
on Education - 2001

 

Narrowing the gap between the information rich and the information poor :
New technologies and the future of the school

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Smart Schools

Malaysia

The Malaysian "Smart School" is a learning project that has been systematically reinvented in terms of teaching-learning practices and school management in order to prepare children for the Information Age. The concept includes a broad curriculum philosophy that considers the different capabilities and needs of all students and the on-going assessment that supports good instruction and a high level of parents and community involvement and support. Its objectives are mainly to: produce a thinking and technology-literate work force (by teaching thinking across the curriculum and applying technology in teaching and learning), democratise education and achieve intellectual, physical, emotional and spiritual development of the individual student. With the aid of multimedia technology, self-accessed, self-paced and self-directed learning can be practised. This allows students to develop their strengths to excellence and breed a generation of Malaysian inventors and innovators.

New curricular emphasis for "Smart School" is channelled through 4 subject areas, i.e. science, mathematics, Bahasa Melayu and English, by knowledge acquisition, analytical and creative thinking and the ability to make decisions and solve problems, IT competency, proficiency in an international language and inculcation of good moral values towards the development of a good person. Basically, the Ministry of Education provides computers and other equipments to "Smart Schools" and help them to implement the program and develop the potential to manage a technology-enhanced program by themselves. At the moment, 90 schools (about 1% of Malaysian schools) are "Smart". Depending on the region and the effective possibilities when the program begins, various levels of technology are used for different schools. Priority is given to raise all schools to a minimum level, while efforts will be made to bring as many schools as possible to the highest level.

The Malaysian Smart Schools Project was started as one of the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) Flagship Applications , along with 6 others. Since the MSC is intended as a test bed in the telecommunications and high-tech industries for the region, the smart school is intended to support the MSC in producing knowledgeable workers for the industries within the MSC. The flagship will support the government's plan to obtain the status of a developed nation by the year 2020 and to gain a competitive edge with other developed countries in the global economy. The project was indeed timely to address the following educational needs to prepare graduates for the Information Age, to bring about a systematic change in education (from an exam-dominated culture to a thinking and creative knowledge culture), to re-emphasise science and technology education with a focus on creativity and innovation and to equip students with IT competences.

Curriculum Development
Center School Divisions
Ministry of Education
Pesiaran Duta
Off Jalan Duta
50604 Kuala Lumpur
Tel : 03 6531613
Website:
http://www.moe.edu.my

Institutional Partners
90 smart schools

January 1999:the 90 pioneering schools and broad development of programme for exisiting and all new schools between 2000 and 2010