Tan Sri James Jemut Masing

KUCHING: Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri James Jemut Masing agrees with the call made by University College of Technology Sarawak (UCTS) vice-chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Khairuddin Ab Hamid that course assessment grades should not be lowered.

“We must use the obstacles created by Covid-19 as a challenge to be better students, and not as an excuse to lower our will and skills in order to pass exams.

“If we do, we are only fooling ourselves. These obstacles in life will still be there, and still be the same once Covid-19 is contained,” he said in a statement on Monday (July 6).

Masing, who is an anthropologist by training, said that “if one needs to climb a mountain, to reach the other side, that mountain will not disappear even if one falls sick.”

“So, get ourselves better by taking the correct medication. For once we are better, then we climb up that mountain.”

He stressed that obstacles in life did not accommodate to human physical abilities, but humans must accommodate themselves to the physical challenges.

“As such in the case, it should not be the other way round,” he said.

Last Sunday (July 5), Prof Khairuddin said, by lowering course assessment grades, this would incite a stigma among graduates that they did not earn the high grades as it was purposely lowered during Covid-19.

“We shouldn’t change the grades; it will reflect the quality of the university. But what we can do is to change the method that learning materials are being delivered.

“But if we lower grades, then the people would say that one only can get high marks due to Covid-19. This not only affects the university’s image but also that of the student,” he said.