I was surprised to read in the local newspaper about age limit enforced in schools. Basically it says that children cannot go into schools until they reached a certain age. Additionally students of a cannot move up the class unless they are the correct age(mostly those who entered early), even if they passed their exams.
I was curious why the sudden enforcement, as well as its purpose. The only way I see it, the ministry is just following the set rules. May be its because there is a belief that students of a certain age can only learn at a certain level and therefore it would be pointless for them to learn at a more advance level. as they would be at risk at failing at that level and therefore wasting government resources.
The decision to enforce the age limits will standardize the age of students at school levels, and allow all students to be learning and competing at the same level. or does it? Do all people at the same age, mentally mature similarly?
When I was in school, there were a small number of students who were at the most 2 years younger then me, and they performed as well as the other students. They interacted with “older” students in a similar manner.
Biological Age and Mental age may be correlated. As foolish youth leads to the wise elder. But I do not think everyone’s rate of development is the same. Sure, studies have been done on students of a certain biological age should be able to learn certain things, but the ages are often an average of the study. Not the ages themselves. There are also studies that suggest that date of birth and school performance may not be completely correlated, and that any differences would disappear in a few years.
“estimates suggest there is no effect of age at school entry on educational performance” Source:http://ideas.repec.org/p/iza/izadps/dp1507.html
What I found to be the most unfortunate consequence is that with this enforced rule, Bruneians will never see young geniuses not unlike those in other countries of teens getting a degree. That would have been nice for brunei. Something to be proud of 🙂
A good option would be to make the age limit rule to remain a guideline, that can be revised, or allowing students who do not fulfill the age requirements to move on as long as they pass their tests and exams.