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Winners ignored, 5th placers lauded?

The World Robot Olympiad (WRO) is an event for science, technology and education, that brings together youths from all over the world in order to develop their creativity and problem solving skills through challenging and educational robot competitions.

Participating teams need to create, design and build a robot model that looks or behaves like human.

This year the task of organising the competition was given to the Philippines. The Ministry of Education and many private companies in the Philippines jointly sponsored the event.

The steering committee consists of well-known academicians from China, Taiwan, Japan, Korea and Singapore. 250 teams from 22 countries participated.

There are six gold medals on offer as there are two categories in the competition; the Open category and regular category. Each category is further divided into Elementary (primary school), Junior High (Forms 1 to 3) and Senior High (Forms 4 and 5) categories.

Malaysia won two gold medals, one by the Chung Ling High School (Kampung Baru, Penang Island) for Open Category, Senior High school level, the other by SMK Bintulu for Regular Category, Junior High School level.

This piece of news was reported under the title "Champs once again" in the Nov 14 edition of Star .

But the report is about the team that won the fifth place in the Open Category, Elementary Level. Here is an excerpt from the report:

‘Year Five pupil Muhd Syamil Khairi from SK Wan Ibrahim, Kuala Lipis, Pahang, said he and his two teammates Mohd Ezzameer Fitri and Muhammad Hazimuddin Halif took three months to build their robot which performs an orang asli dance known as the "sewang" with the supervision of their robotic club teacher Mahmud Salleh.’

There is no mention that the team highlighted in the report was awarded the fifth place in the Open Category, Elementary Level.

I can't help but feeling that the author was trying to give the casual reader an impression that the above said team is the team that will put Malaysia at the top of the world.

Was the Chung Ling High School mentioned at all? No.

The SMJK Chung Ling mentioned at the end of the report is in Butterworth. Even SMK Bintulu who won the gold medal was mentioned merely as a participating team. Here is an excerpt from the report”

‘The other teams which represented Malaysia at the olympiad were SMK Bintulu in Bintulu; SMJK Chung Ling, Butterworth; SJKC Chi Man, Kuala Lumpur; SJKC Taman Connaught, Kuala Lumpur; MRSM Kubang Pasu, Alor Setar; SMK Sultanah Hajjah Kalsom, Kuantan; SMJK Jit Sin, Ayer Itam; and Sekolah Sultan Alam Shah, Putrajaya.’

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