Deputy Education Minister Datuk Chong Sin Woon said that parents should not force their children to pursue courses they have absolutely no interest in. Parents should instead talk to their children to find out what they want to pursue, so the chances of them doing well would be greater.
We often see this in Asian families, other ethnicities don’t usually have this practice. Every child has their own interest in what they like to pursue, but some parents will decide what they want their children to do or which college they want their child to go to, years before they finish their national exam such as the SPM.
“When you force your child to pursue a programme he or she dislikes, the consequences can be devastating,” said Chong.
He shared a true story from his own experience, he said he had a friend in a similar predicament.
“I knew this friend whose father wanted all his children to become engineers just like him. Although this friend of mine was more musically-inclined, he was not given an option to pursue music as a career,” he said.
To please the father, his friend duly completed his degree in engineering but immediately pursued a programme in music after graduation.
“And today, he is a successful music engineer in a leading private university,” he added.
There had been cases where people pursue programmes that they had no passion in and suffered in silence. Due to cases like this, there have been cases of suicide too because the child cannot handle the pressure and the high expectation set for them.
Parents should always gauge their child’s interest or potential by looking at the psychometric assessment carried out when they were in school.
There are many ways parents can approach this, find out which suits you and your child and let your child be free to make the choice!