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MARA President Suggests Creating Paid MRSM For Bumi Elites

MARA President Suggests Creating Paid MRSM For Bumi Elites

MARA president Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki re-introduced a previously proposed plan to build MARA Junior Science Colleges targeted at the elite segment of society.

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Newly-appointed MARA chairman Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki has suggested MARA Corp look into creating a Mara Junior Science College (MRSM) for the Bumiputera elites.

Based on his Facebook post, it’s believed the idea was proposed as a way for MARA to expand its investment and business opportunities.

Asyraf claimed that some parties have suggested the idea of a paid MRSM targeted at the elites and high-earners in society.

He also said parents from this segment of society have shown interest to send their children to MRSM although they could afford to send their children to study in elite private schools abroad.

Asyraf said these parents are willing to do so because MRSM has been proven to be a brand known for its unique and high-quality education.

However, he emphasised that the paid MRSM system should never be compromised in terms of its philosophy, orientation, and culture of education, including the Ulul Albab curriculum so that the quality and consistency of delivery are maintained.

According to Free Malaysia Today, then Rural and Regional Development Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob suggested building paid MRSMs in 2016.

Ismail claimed he received lots of requests from high-earning parents who wanted to send their children to MRSM.

However, in 2018, the Pakatan Harapan government decided not to proceed with the proposal as it was seen as moving away from the original goal.

Netizen’s reactions regarding the idea of a paid MRSM for the elites were split. Some of them believe the “profits” could be re-invested to improve and maintain the other MRSM schools.

A netizen said it might encourage the rich and poor students to mingle, claiming that it’s not a possible situation in private schools.

Another person was amenable to the idea of elite MRSM but added that the fees must be on par with the school’s infrastructure. They also said the students must still meet the academic requirement to qualify as paid MRSM students.

Meanwhile, a netizen said the elite MRSM fees must match the private school fees to discourage these parents from sending their children to elite MRSM.

On the other hand, others pointed out that having an elite MRSM defeats the purpose of having MRSM in the first place since they’re all essentially the same as private and international schools.

Having a paid MRSM just for the elite society also furthers the gap between the rich and the poor.

MRSM was created by Majlis Amanah Rakyat (MARA) for bright Bumiputera students from local schools with underprivileged students given the priority to join MRSM schools.

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