KOMPAS/ESTER LINCE NAPITUPULU New students in elementary, junior high, and senior high/vocational schools starting from this academic year will be given priority to be accepted in schools closest to their residence. Seen in the picture, students in the Aru Islands, Maluku, gather in the school yard some time ago.

PPDB with Zoning System Must Be More Inclusive

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JAKARTA, KOMPAS – The admission of new students in primary to secondary education has received strong attention. Pressure for evaluation of the process of accepting new students with zoning or achievement systems and the provision of high-cost school uniforms have emerged. The government needs a fair solution to improve the quality of education.

Regarding the new student admissions (PPDB), there is a problem with access to quality education that is not inclusive for all children. The capacity of public schools is insufficient, but on the other hand, many private schools have the opportunity to become partners in overcoming the government’s limitations by not being invited to cooperate. However, the existence of private schools also has the potential to address the problem of access to quality education for school-aged children at an affordable cost.

National Coordinator of the Indonesian Education Monitoring Network (JPPI), Ubaid Matraji in Jakarta on Monday (31/7/2023), said that after remaining silent for a long time, Education, Culture, Research, and Technology Minister Nadiem Anwar Makarim finally spoke out regarding zoning. “Unfortunately, it was not a way out or a solution to the problems that were expressed, but rather a complaint about the annual tax burden caused by policies that he claims he did not create,” said Ubaid.

At the Learning 2023 event in Jakarta, Saturday (29/7/2023), Nadiem, during a discussion with the Initiators of All Students, All Teachers and Najelaa Shihab, appreciated the Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture (Menko PMK), Muhadjir Effendy, who had initiated the PPDB program using the zoning system when he served as Minister of Education and Culture. “Zoning is an example of legacy or legacy of educational policies that need to be continued and perfected. Now that’s one example where sustainability is very important. So there are various kinds of policies that previously existed that we pushed for, which we continue and that’s not a problem,” said Nadiem.

According to Nadiem, the zoning-based PPDB system takes into account the needs of students to be able to attend school near their homes, thus creating a spirit of togetherness in building schools together with educational staff, school committees and all school members. The PPDB policy which uses a zoning-based system should be maintained as it is capable of addressing the gap between students.

“In the past, many parents registered their children for tutoring in order to enter their favorite school. Furthermore, there were also students who were economically unable to do so, and had to pay for private schools because they did not pass the entrance exam for public schools,” Nadiem said.

Ubaid said PPDB zoning still needs to be supported, but there must be a serious evaluation. Unfortunately, for the chaos that continues to occur every year, including in 2023, there is no party that is gentle responsible for the problems that befall this community, then offers a just solution. In the name of administrative control, there are 4,791 children in West Java and 208 children in the City of Bogor whose names have been crossed out may not join PPDB.

According to Ubaid, PPDB is not a technical problem in the field or in the regions, but rather a systemic problem triggered by regulations at the central level, namely Permendikbud Number 1 of 2023, which still uses a “selection system” and the government does not provide school seats according to the number of needs. “Want to use any system, but the capacity is not available, chaos will definitely occur,” he said.

“We request that the student admissions process not be based on achievements. If it is, we will revert to a primitive pattern that will amputate children’s right to education. What about children who are not achievers? They are also Indonesian children who have the same rights,” Ubaid stated.

Quality equalization

Reflecting on the chaos of this year’s school enrollment, the Minister of Education and Culture is being asked to take full responsibility and change the enrollment system as regulated in Ministerial Regulation No. 1 of 2021. The new system must be able to guarantee that all children are able to receive a seat in school and require all regional governments to collaborate with the private sector if public school seats are unable to meet demand.

“The zoning system must be implemented based on the distribution of seats and school quality. Therefore, there will no longer be a competition for seats because everyone will get their fair share. Similarly, there will no longer be a pile-up of applicants because there will be no imbalance in quality or favoritism,” stressed Ubaid.”

Separately, Education Practitioner Doni Koesoema said that the PPDB is related to access to education for citizens. The zoning system is still believed to be the best because children can go to school near their home and as an effort to equalize the quality of schools that can be accessed by all children.

“Not less important, there is diversity of students from various socio-economic backgrounds, religions, and intelligence,” said Doni.

The School Enrollment Admission System (PPDB) is not a technical issue at the field or regional level, but it is a systemic problem triggered by regulations at the central level, namely Ministerial Regulation Number 1 of 2023, which still uses a “selection system” and the government does not provide enough school seats to meet the demand.

According to Doni, the zonal student admission selection (PPDB zonasi) should be prioritized first. This does not mean diminishing the significance of achievements, but prioritizing the zonal student admission selection as a preference for accessing education.

“Unfortunately, many local governments have begun to prioritize the achievement-based pathway. Whereas with zoning, access to schooling can be improved, especially if a commitment to equal quality distribution is truly carried out. If state school capacity is insufficient, one can collaborate with government-supported private schools,” said Doni.

According to Doni, zoning policy is a first step to opening up education access. Then, the local government maps which schools need support to improve quality so that parents do not choose favorite schools selectively.

Chairperson of Cahaya Guru Foundation Henny Supolo stated that the spirit of the zoning-based student admission system (PPDB zonasi) must be understood as a spirit of equalizing the quality of schools everywhere. Therefore, qualified teachers and adequate education approaches are needed.

“If not, it opens up the possibility of fraud. Because the school imbalance still occurs. Now, commitment and serious action are needed so that the zoning system with the spirit of equality really happens,” said Henny.

School uniforms

In addition to the process of accepting new students, the issue of the new academic year is also related to high school fees that burden the community. The Association of Education and Teachers (P2G) highlights the practice of expensive school uniform buying and selling.

Head of Advocacy Department of P2G Teachers, Iman Zanatul Haeri, explained that the types of school uniforms now are very diverse. In P2G’s observations in the field, students have at least five different types of school uniforms, including: gray and white uniforms for high schools and vocational schools, and other colors according to the levels of elementary and junior high schools; sports uniforms; scout uniforms; Friday uniforms for Muslim students; and regional or school-specific uniforms, such as batik.

Considering the high number of uniform types and costs associated with uniform purchases, Iman stated that P2G is requesting the Ministry of Education and Culture to review Ministerial Regulation No. 50 of 2022 concerning School Uniforms for Elementary and Secondary Education Students. “This fact shows how many uniforms are worn by students. Purchasing that many uniforms clearly burdens parents, not to mention other extracurricular activity clothes,” said Iman.

The fact also proves that Indonesia’s national education still burdens parents of students due to expensive costs. In addition to school uniforms, parents must meet other school needs, namely shoes, other school attributes, bags, and books. All of these must be fulfilled in addition to enrollment fees and educational development contributions (SPP) for private schools.

Iman reminds that the policy that generates the use of so many uniforms does not correlate with the quality of education. “Please check, what is the correlation between school uniforms and improving the quality of education? Let’s not be too busy regulating children’s uniforms, sacrificing time and energy to improve the quality of education,” said Iman.

P2G Expert Council member Anggi Afriansyah is urging the education department to scour schools. This is because the fact that this has been happening in state schools for a long time is no longer a secret. “Why does this practice still occur? Because of the lack of supervision and strong sanctions from the Education Department or regional leaders,” said Anggi.

By ESTER LINCE NAPITUPULU

Editor:
ALOYSIUS BUDI KURNIAWAN

Sumber: https://www.kompas.id/baca/english/2023/07/31/en-ppdb-zonasi-tetap-didukung?open_from=Search_Result_Page

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