Lipis, Pahang January 28, 2012 – All 120 Penilaian Menengah Rendah (PMR) students enrolled in the East Coast Economic Region’s (ECER) ’empower’ programme in Lipis passed the 2011 public examination, with 31 per cent or 37 students scoring 5As and above.

The PMR 2011 results was better than expected as 51 students managed to secure grades of 3As and 4Bs in the subjects taken, hence exceeding the initial target of only 12 students achieving such grades.

The 120 students were from Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan (SMK) Orang Kaya Haji, SMK Benta and SMK Padang Tengku. Of the total, 17 students obtained straight As in the UPSR 2011 examination.

A total of 400 students signed up for `empower’ Academic Skills Training in Lipis in March 2011, comprising 120 PMR students, 170 Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) students and 110 Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) students.

In rewarding the PMR students’ academic achievement, awards were presented to the 17 outstanding students today by YB Dato’ Ir Mohd Soffi Bin Tan Sri Abdul Razak, State Assemblyman of Benta. He is also Pahang State Committee Chairman for Housing, Basic Amenities and Transport.

Initiated by the ECER Development Council (ECERDC), the ’empower’ programme is provided free. It consists of Academic Skills Training to help students achieve academic excellence while Entrepreneurship Skills Training provides skills so that the participants can generate additional income.

According to ECERDC Chief Executive Officer Dato’ Jebasingam Issace John, the PMR results in Lipis was very encouraging with students showing vast improvements academically since the implementation of the empower programme in March 2011.

“The results showed the effectiveness of the ’empower’ programme in training the students and making them study smart. Earlier, 33 UPSR students in Lipis who were also enrolled in the programme scored 5As and above,” he noted.

Dato’ Issace said that in 2012, ECERDC planned to expand the empower programme to three districts in the East Coast states namely Cameron Highlands and Raub in Pahang as well as Bachok in Kelantan.

Lipis is the third district in Pahang that embarked on the ’empower’ programme. It involved a pioneer batch of 900 residents comprising students, youth and adults who live in Lipis.

The ECER’s ’empower’ programme’s objective is to create employment and entrepreneurship opportunities, increase the participants’ income, as well as to boost the academic achievement of participating students.