The School System

Information on the system of schooling in Malaysia, from pre-primary to higher education...

There are several different types of schools in Malaysia, which differ mainly according to the language used to teach students. There are Malay and non-Malay schools, which include Chinese schools (where the language of instruction is Mandarin) and Tamil schools.

A child may attend any type of national school regardless of their religious background or language. Malay and English are compulsory subjects for all public schools.

Chinese is also compulsory in Chinese schools, while Tamil is compulsory in Tamil schools. There is also a requirement that schools teach either Tamil or Chinese if a certain percentage of parents request that either of these languages is taught.

National schools are owned and administered by the government, while National-type schools are funded by the government, but they are responsible for their own administration.

Standardised tests are a part of the Malaysian school system.

Home schooling

Home schooling is legal in Malaysia. However, it is necessary to apply for an exemption from the Ministry of Education, which has stringent approval regulations. It is difficult for families to gain approval.

  • For more information about home schooling: Click here