Education is an important part of a nation’s development and is a crucial key to unlocking an economy’s success. Quality education provides a bright future for a country and its citizens; a future above poverty lines, hunger and food insecurities. The education system in Brunei focuses on just that—ensuring quality education for all in hopes of achieving a better tomorrow for its citizens and the country as a whole.

What makes the education system different and possibly successful? It provides free education to children in not only primary levels, but secondary levels as well. As a result, more and more children are being educated. According to the World Bank Group, an estimated 94 percent of children are enrolled in school. There also seems to be a correlation between education and economy; Brunei also happens to be a high income country with one of the most developed economies in Asia.

Brunei is located in the southern region of Malaysia and has created a government that highly values education and places the responsibility of education upon its shoulders. The education system aims to develop its citizens’ knowledge, and by doing so, develop the country as a whole as well.

Schools in Brunei

Education in Brunei has previously been established to emulate Islamic forms of eduction. These Islamic schools, also known as Madrassas, serve as an important part of education in Brunei; however, in more recent years, the education system has slightly shifted to recognize western education as well. Although in recent years the education in Brunei has begun to encompass western learning, the education system remains closely rooted to the religious values of the region.

There are schools all over the country that provide free primary and secondary education to children. As more schools were being built, the country saw a substantial increase in not only the quantity of children attending, but the quality of education as well. Schools in Brunei provide comprehensive lessons in subjects involving history, language and geography, as well as the study of technology, mainly computers.

Brunei Ministry of Education

Brunei established a ministry of education that led the education sector with a key goal in mind: a proper development of the school system and of education. A five year plan was then implemented in 1954 in order to ensure this principal aim was reached. Additionally, the Brunei ministry of education formed and implemented several educational reforms such as the National Education Policy of 1962 and the National Education System (1985) that ensured quality education free of charge at every grade level. To do so successfully, the ministry governed the schools, funded the education programs and determined the curriculum. As a result, Brunei saw a substantial rise in literacy rates.

Following the establishment of Brunei’s ministry of education, the literacy rate improved from 69 percent to 92 percent. The implementation of the Brunei ministry of education has proven to be successful. As of 2012, 92 percent of children were enrolled in primary education, with an even higher 94 percent enrolled in secondary education.

Ultimately, education in Brunei has been established with a major purpose: to create quality education, free for all citizens, to be used by citizens as a means of achieving and living to their fullest potential. The education system in Brunei seeks to prepare citizens for the future and help them possess the skills and knowledge necessary to be able to excel in society and the changing demands society has on one’s livelihood.

There’s a known correlation between education and a nation’s success; more often than not, highly educated countries have a more stable economy and way of life than countries with limited education. Free education for all seems to also be a key component to Brunei’s successful and continual development.

– Nada Sewidan

Sources: APEC, Maps of World, World Bank
Photo: Flickr