Chinese schools can never become mainstream, says deputy minister

Chong-Sin-Woon

PETALING JAYA: Chinese vernacular schools can never become mainstream, Deputy Education Minister Chong Sin Woon has said.

Chong, who is also MCA Youth chief, was quoted saying this in The Star, when disputing news reports that suggested the possibility of Chinese schools becoming mainstream schools in the next decade.

“There are only 1,298 Chinese vernacular schools, while there are more than 5,000 national schools in the country.

“Chinese schools are located mainly in Chinese-majority areas, so there is no agenda to become mainstream,” he was quoted as saying.

Chong added that Chinese schools had however, “evolved” to become more multiracial in composition, with nearly 18 per cent of their students being non-Chinese.

According to him, this trend is more pronounced in Sabah and Sarawak.

On the issue of Chinese school pupils being forced to carry too many workbooks, Chong said he had met with the National Council of Headmasters to remedy the matter.

FMT had earlier this month, reported that a two-year research carried out by the National Education Advisory Council had shown that Chinese schools had the potential to become mainstream, in the next 10 years.

This summary was made based on the number of parents opting to send their children to Chinese schools, due to various reasons.