This chapter demonstrates the Malaysia's education system, how the structural deficiencies that the Malaysia Education Blueprint (MEB) seeks to address can be traced back to the circumstances of the country's formation. The new economic orientation adopted by the national education system was further cemented in the Second Malaysia Plan, which outlined the role of education as "meeting the manpower needs of the country" and "building a progressive society orientated towards modern science and technology". In New Economic Policy (NEP) the developmental state model of Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad ushered in a wave of educational neoliberalism through the proliferation of private education institutions. Top-down bureaucracy could enable swift decision-making and the standardization of policy implementation, in addition to discretionary control over resource allocation–all key to the success of the NEP. The chapter concludes by situating the MEB within the context of 'centralized decentralization', a process that is akin to symptomatic fixes that do not resolve the inherent structural problems.