Malaysia is mulling ways to encourage boys to take up higher education in a bid to improve gender imbalance at universities, according to deputy education minister. Deputy education minister Wee Ka Siong
on Sunday said Malaysia was planning to introduce vocational training at schools from 2013 so that pupils can hone practical skills, such as repairing cars, to prevent males from dropping out.
"The gender imbalance is something that is a world phenomenon but we have to find a way to balance it out," Wee told AFP.
"(Vocational training) will curb this drop-out issue. We have to retain them in the system," he said.
The ratio for university enrolment in July stood at 65 females to 35 males, with some universities in this Muslim-majority nation recording a 70-30 imbalance in their latest semester intake.
Measures to spur interest in academics among males will also reportedly include getting male undergraduate students to encourage school pupils to continue their studies.
The minister did not give specific details about the plan, or how vocational training would correct the gender imbalance in academic institutions, which local media reports say has been widening over the past decade.