Joko Plans to Abolish National Exam for Younger Students; “It’s better to look stupid but be smart, rather than to look intellectual but be stupid. It’s better to listen to people’s opinion rather than act like a know-it-all.”

Joko Plans to Abolish National Exam for Younger Students

By SP/Arnold Sianturi on 11:52 pm Jun 10, 2014

  1.  Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDI-P) presidential hopeful Joko Widodo on Tuesday said that he would eliminate Indonesia’s national exam for elementary and junior high school students if elected.

“It’s better if there’s no national exam for students in elementary school and junior high school,” Joko said at a teachers’ workshop in North Sumatra. “It’s better to look stupid but be smart, rather than to look intellectual but be stupid. It’s better to listen to people’s opinion rather than act like a know-it-all.”

The teachers said “Amen.”

He was referring to controversy surrounding the exam: critics have argued that the test is so difficult that it encourages rote learning and memorization aimed at achieving a high exam score rather than depth or subtly of comprehension.

Education Minister Muhammad Nuh last year said that he would eliminate the elementary school exam in 2014, which he did. But the government replaced it with a new, similar test, 75 percent of which was written by local education agencies and 25 percent of which was written by the central government.


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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (, the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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