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Preferential Policies and Secondary School Attainment in Peninsular Malaysia

Suet-ling Pong
Sociology of Education
Vol. 66, No. 4 (Oct., 1993), pp. 245-261
DOI: 10.2307/2112755
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2112755
Page Count: 17
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Preferential Policies and Secondary School Attainment in Peninsular Malaysia
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Abstract

This article examines the effects of Malaysia's preferential educational policies on secondary school attainment for the country's three ethnic groups and investigates trends in gender and socioeconomic differences within each ethnic group. Data from the Second Malaysian Family Life Survey were used to analyze the odds of secondary school attainment, given primary school completion, for birth cohorts born between 1940 and 1969. Over time, Malays were increasingly more likely to attain secondary school than were non-Malays. Among Malays, gender and socioeconomic differences narrowed over time, but among non-Malays, they did not narrow and in some cases were exacerbated. The findings support a social structural, rather than a cultural, explanation of ethnic differences in educational attainment.

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