: The Education Ministry expects the enrolment for preschool in the country to reach 92 per cent next year.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also Education Minister, said this also meant that an additional 3,500 classrooms must be provided next year to facilitate the increase of almost 71,000 in the number of the preschool children nationwide.
"The ministry understands the importance of quality education for preschool children to prepare them in various aspects, including cognitive, mental and physical, before entering primary school.
"The expected increase is based on the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2015," he said in a speech at the launch of National Preschool Education Excellence Programme 2014 at SMK Medini here today.
His speech text was read by Datuk Sufaat Tumin, who is the Deputy Director-General of Education (Education Operation Sector).
Muhyiddin said under the national key result areas' (NKRA) initiative, the ministry must ensure that 891,329 children aged 4+ and 5+ across the country would obtain preschool education provided either by the ministry, other government agencies, private sector or non-governmental organisations this year.
As such, he called on the private sector to help the government in achieving the target.
He said by 2020, approximately 900,000 children were expected to enrol in preschools nationwide and 50 per cent of the preschools were expected to be managed by the private sector.
In support of the expanding and opening of more private preschools, the deputy prime minister said the Education Ministry had also increased the amount of its financial aid for fee, launching grant and primary loan.