PARLIAMENT | Education Minister Maszlee Malik today stressed that the additional 15,000 seats for the Education Ministry’s matriculation programme will not affect the intake of the Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM) holders to the first degree programmes at public universities.
He said there were places available at public universities every year, including about 5,000 seats in science.
“The additional 15,000 seats via the matriculation programme will not affect the chances of STPM holders as there are about 40,000 available seats offered,” he told the Dewan Rakyat today.
He said this in his reply to a supplementary question from Santhara Kumar (PKR - Segamat) who asked about the issue concerning STPM students facing difficulties in getting placement at public universities due to the increase in the number of matriculation students.
Maszlee said admission to public universities was not only via STPM and matriculation programme as there were other routes, including the universities’ own diploma and foundation programmes.
In April, the cabinet decided to increase the ministry's matriculation programme student intake from 25,000 to 40,000, and the quota for 90 percent Bumiputera and 10 percent non-Bumiputera students was maintained.
Responding to the original question of priorities between STPM holders and matriculation programme students for admission at public universities, Maszlee said the ministry had practised meritocracy in students’ admission since the 2002/2003 session, regardless of categories, which is 90 percent on academic performance and 10 per cent on co-curricular achievements.