Back when I was in school, tuition was what you took for remedial purposes – you were weak in a particular subject, and you needed extra coaching. Even then, the numbers who were tutored outside school were small, not to mention the number of teachers who taught after school hours to earn a little more money. I remember a math teacher (he was from UK) who gave me extra lessons in math for free, which is practically unheard of nowadays. Well, as they say, times have changed.
One mother told us her 16-year old son needed tuition because he wouldn’t study otherwise. Another parent said the schoolteachers weren’t teaching and tuition made up for what her son did not learn. Still another said tuition kept her child out of mischief.
It’s a terrible indictment on the education system that more and more Malaysian children are taking personal tuition in multiple subjects, whatever the reasons. It’s not uncommon to hear of children who actually spend afternoons and evenings studying almost ALL school subjects in a tuition centre.
Take a look at the table below and tell me that something’s not wrong with this picture:
Read more here:
- Something is definitely wrong when students have to resort to so much of tuition to help them with their school lessons. If schools were doing their job, there would be no need for the kind of tuition that goes on in money-making tuition centres. Why aren’t students in school learning and what’s hindering schools from doing their job?
- It is unconscionable that 50% of teachers give tuition. It merely fuels suspicion that some teachers deliberately serve a half meal in school only to dish out more to those who are enrolled in their private tuition classes. Should school teachers be allowed to give tuition anyway?
- Something needs to be done about the wages teachers are earning. We shouldn’t be surprised about the quality of teaching when the profession draws people with less than noble aspirations and skills. With the salaries they're offered, surely you don't expect the best people to become teachers, do you?
- The emphasis on examination scores has eclipsed the true nature of education, leading to a skewed understanding of learning and its value to making a whole person. No wonder the papers are replete with stories of secondary school students who have poor social skills, or are unable to learn when placed in colleges and universities abroad where rote-learning take a backseat to exercising one’s critical faculties.
- The hours spent in tuition simply drains all interest in real learning and leaves a child with no time for other pursuits. Imagine, a child spends nearly 6 hours in school and after a hasty lunch is packed off to a tuition centre where he goes through the very subjects his teachers in school were supposed to have taught him. Is there anything more wearisome for a school kid?
- Too many children have given up music or art because school, exams, homework, and tuition rob them of their leisure time. No wonder so many graduate from textbooks to newspapers and nothing else once they leave school. We fork out money to put our children through hours of tuition and then bemoan their lack of creativity, social consciousness, or interest in spiritual matters.
- Think of the stress on families. How much time does a child get to spend with Dad and Mom (and his siblings) if all the time he has is taken up by tuition everyday? It can’t be good when such an inordinate amount of time is spent "socializing" with peers in school and at tuition while so little time is spent doing things together at home as a family.