Archive for the ‘Education, Sabah.’ Category

Principals need to be well-informed of govt policies – CM

Thursday, April 4th, 2019

Jenifer (fourth left), Mistirine (third left) and Kusdi (fifth left) at the event.

KOTA KINABALU: Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Shafie Apdal has called on all principals in the state to always be well-informed of the State Government’s latest policies and initiatives, especially when it concerns the education industry

Shafie stressed that knowledge and good understanding of the latest policies and initiatives of the Education Ministry would enable the principals to implement more programmes in line with the State Government’s direction, and thus preparing their students to face any challenges.

“For example, schools should further activate STEM and TVET programmes in their respective institutions – in line with the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

“The success of these schools will pave the way for more job opportunities for the people and for them to not rely solely on jobs that are provided by the government,” said Shafie in his speech, read by Assistant Education and Innovation Minister Jenifer Lasimbang at the 43rd Sabah Principals Conference on Wednesday.

Shafie added that all the principals in the state must also be equipped with leadership qualities, so that it would be easier for them to lead their subordinates and to better manage their schools.

He also assured the principals that the Education and Innovation Ministry would work closely with the State Education Department to channel funds for the refurbishment of the dilapidated schools in Sabah.

“As for now, the State Government will focus on the dilapidated schools in the rural areas that are in need of facilities.

“We will try our best to help the schools despite financial constraints that we’re currently facing. If we don’t have enough money to build schools, we will assist in other aspects,” said Shafie.

A total of 222 principals from around Sabah and Labuan attended the conference.

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Coaching is a vital teaching tool

Sunday, March 17th, 2019
(Stock image for illustration purposes) It is different from training because it “draws out” rather than “puts in”.

THE 21st century has many creative avenues and one of the popular changes in education and business training is coaching.

Coaching is defined as a human development process that involves structured, focused interaction and the use of appropriate strategies, tools and techniques to promote desirable and sustainable change.

It is different from training because it “draws out” rather than “puts in”. When I reflect upon my years of providing courses for in-house and teachers-to-be, I realise that I was using more coaching strategies rather than training strategies.

Brazilian educator and philosopher Paulo Freire, a prominent advocate of critical pedagogy, states that students are not empty vessels. When they come to school, they have been exposed to their home and local cultures. Thus, teachers need to see them as individuals who are unique and help bring out the best in them.

They are there for a purpose so teachers must apply appropriate coaching methods to nurture innovative, creative and divergent thinking that improves all aspects of the students’ lives.

Two fundamental intentions at the heart of coaching are awareness and accountability.

The International Coach Federation defines creating awareness as the ability to integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information and to make interpretations that help the client, in this case the students, gain awareness and achieve agreed-upon results.

The thoughts and feelings that are used in coaching come from the students.

Accountability is an effective instrument to help in the coaching process to enable a change of habits.

When a teacher uses coaching strategies in the classroom, it builds accountability, which improves the chances of success. Because students are aware of their strengths and weaknesses, the principle behind accountability will work with any kind of action step. Thus, the basic support structure in a coaching relationship is the progress report.

In Malaysia, the good news is that teachers are already coaching their students via formative assessment.

In coaching, it is essential that we pay attention to the needs of those we are coaching. Active listening is essential. We need to listen to the voices of those we are coaching as they want to be heard. It is tough with educators who feel that they have so much to give as educators and students are not listening to them.

We have to ask ourselves whether students are given a fair chance to be heard.

Are we responding to their voices? Are we relating what we teach to their understanding and their questions? Do we provide them space to voice their opinions?

Our cultures are powerful enough to shape our expectations of ourselves, and engagement with others.

I think it is time that teachers and lecturers in teachers’ training institutes were exposed to coaching strategies.

When I attend coaching workshops, I realise that I have been using some of the strategies and tools.

But humility and cultural sensitivity is essential here to remind educators that they have to venture into this new dimension and apply what is practical based on our multicultural, and multireligious background.

By Dr Vishalache Balakrishnan

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Ministry’s support for SMK Limbanak student delegation to Sweden

Monday, February 25th, 2019

Liew (5th from left) with the teachers and students of SMK Limbanak. On her right is Jenifer.

KOTA KINABALU: The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Environment will sponsor souvenirs from Sabah for a student delegation attending the Swemun 2019 Conference in Sweden next month.

Its Minister Datuk Christina Liew said the six students of SMK Limbanak, Penampang deserved support as they will be playing the role of Ambassadors for Malaysia, Sabah in particular.

They are Form Six students Jeromie Lam Chung Pei (Group Leader), Xlee Jude and Jennelle Jess Jammy and Form Four students Melfrance Jill Jouting, Ivan Nicholas Norrand and Carmen Darius Joiwin who will be representing Malaysia.

“I am happy for you. Given that there will also be participants from 20 other countries, I am certain you will have a great cultural exchange. While you gain exposure and enrich your experience in Sweden, do capitalise on the golden opportunity to promote Sabah as you exchange notes. Tell the world what Sabah has to offer to tourists and visitors,” the Minister told them during a courtesy call. The students were accompanied by Assistant Minister of Education and Innovation, Jenifer Lasimbang and Moyog Kapitan Cina David Ng Chi Fong.

The conference will be held at the Falun Frigymnasium in Falun, Sweden. Other participating countries are United Kingdom, USA, Russia, France, Canada, China, Japan, Sudan, South Sudan, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, Germany, Portugal,, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Czech Republic, Spain and Netherlands.

The students will be chaperoned by four teachers – Anita Asin (Delegation Chief), Doris Kok (Student Welfare), Jovita Claudius (Finance) and Norberta Jualin (Student Welfare).

Briefing the Minister on their “Fly Us and Our Culture to Sweden” proposal, presenter Ivan Nicholas said Swemun stands for Sweden Model United Nations (MUN). “MUN is a role-play of the actual United Nations (UN). It is an extracurricular activity that stimulates delegates to debate and discuss the current issues that are happening around the world,” he explained.

He said the objectives of the trip are to promote Sabah’s traditional dances and costumes, food and handicraft products, to experience the Swedish culture, to develop leadership skills and to enhance vital skills in communication, public speaking, negotiation, conflict resolution and research.

“We want other people from all around the world to know where Sabah is l ocated and about our different ethnic groups. We will be wearing our traditional costume and performing the Sumazau.

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YS Group to enhance its education program

Friday, February 15th, 2019

Recipients of the Appreciation Award with Shafie (eighth right) and Jamalul (seventh left).

KOTA KINABALU: Yayasan Sabah Group will further enhance its educational development programme, which is the main focus of the Group in ensuring the growth of a generation’s successful future, said Yayasan Sabah director Datuk Haji Jamalul Kiram bin Datuk Haji Zakaria.

Jamalul, who is also chief executive officer of Innoprise Corporation Sdn. Bhd., Yayasan Sabah Group will bring about more educational opportunities for students in creating excellence in education from early childhood to tertiary education,.

“In 2018, early childhood development activities through Taska Ria Nursery, Tadika Ria Kindergarten, Taska Kristal Ria Child Care, Transition Centre and Rural Kindergartens have benefited a total of 509 students.

“To date, 12,882 preschool children have benefited from Yayasan Sabah Group’s early childhood development activities,” he said at the Yayasan Sabah Group annual dinner held at Menara Tun Mustapha on Wednesday, 13 Feb.

“Yayasan Sabah Group in 2018 offered 2,335 new student loans, scholarships and bursaries for secondary school students as well as those studying at Institutions of Higher Learning.

“From 1967 to 2018, Yayasan Sabah Group has spent RM114.3 million on scholarships/bursaries benefiting 72,625 secondary students. Additionally, scholarships/bursaries for Higher Education worth RM334.7 million were spent from 1968 up to 2018 benefiting 18,717 students, while RM228.9 million worth of student loan has been spent for 10,026 students in tertiary education.

“Yayasan Sabah Group also spent RM95 million on the Sabah State Scholarship Award of Excellence (ABCNS) from 1990 until 2018 benefiting 553 students,” he said.

In 2018, a RM10 million One-Off Scholarship Assistance was launched by Chief Minister of Sabah cum Yayasan Sabah Board of Trustees chairman Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Mohd. Shafie bin Haji Apdal on 21 September 2018.

A total of 14,726 students has applied for the fund and the payment process of the scholarship is running smoothly.

“This special fund is the initiative of Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Mohd. Shafie in assisting outstanding and underprivileged students who have just enrolled in Institutions of Higher Learning,” said Jamalul.

“Overall, Yayasan Sabah Group has spent RM772.7 million on scholarships, bursaries and education loans which benefited 101,921 secondary and Institutions of Higher Learning students since 1967 up till present.”

Jamalul also elaborated on the successful academic achievement programmes by both Yayasan Sabah Group owned Sabah Foundation Technical College (SFTC) and University College Sabah Foundation (UCSF).

“In 2018, a total of 821 students pursued their studies at SFTC in 24 certificate and diploma courses. A total of 465 students successfully completed their studies and graduated on 11 October 2018,” Jamalul said.

“UCSF is currently offering a Foundation programme, 10 Diploma programmes and seven Bachelors Degree programmes to potential students. As of December 2018, a total of 587 students have been studying at UCSF and 252 students are graduating from UCSF this year.”

Yayasan Sabah Group staff and their spouses attended the dinner graced by Shafie and his wife Datin Seri Panglima Hajah Shuryani binti Datuk Haji Shuaib.

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Close to target of 90 per cent Sabah teachers achieved

Friday, January 25th, 2019

Mistirine (third right) with the new primary school teachers after presenting them with housing letters.

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah has achieved 86.81 per cent Sabahan teachers at the primary school level after the placement of 187 new teachers statewide.

State Education Department director Mistirine Radin said this was in line with the Ministry of Education 90:10 policy to have 90 per cent Sabahan teachers in Sabah.

The 187 teachers who graduated from the Teachers Education Institutes (IPG) last year has been posted to several primary schools in Sabah, effective yesterday.

Mistirine said the placement of the teachers was done based on their specialisations and the districts which are in critical need of teachers.

Most of the teachers involved specialised in English, Kadazandusun Language, Mathematics, Islamic Education, Early Childhood Education, Music Education, Physical Education and Special Education, she said during the presentation of housing letters and briefing for new teachers yesterday,

“Teachers would be placed based on option need and locality, namely options such as English, Kadazan Dusun, Mathematics, Islamic Studies, Early Childhood Education, Music, Physical Education and Special Education, among others.

“The State Education Department also acknowledges the gap between status of teachers closer to the city and in rural areas, hence the placement of teachers according to districts with a shortage in particular options. This is so that children in rural areas stand to gain equal opportunities in education,” she said.

by Fiqah Roslan.

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Collaboration with Indonesia in education

Friday, January 11th, 2019

SANDAKAN: Politeknik Sandakan Sabah (PSS) is ready to collaborate with Indonesia in the field of education.

According to PSS director, Tajul Ariffin Mohamed Arif, the international cooperation is a first step towards expanding the fields of study offered by PSS through collaboration with educational institutions in Indonesia.

With such cooperation it is possible to introduce a student exchange programme between Indonesian students and PSS students, Tajul added.

Tajul explained that through the collaboration, PSS could also understand the technologies available there or to study the technologies available in both Indonesia as well as in Malaysia, especially on Agro technology and Aquaculture.

“If the collaboration materializes it is the first for us in international relations,” Tajul said to media following the courtesy visit by representatives of the Indonesian Consulate-General in Kota Kinabalu to PSS on Thursday.

Commenting on the proposal to expand fields of study available in PSS, Tajul intends to visit the Bogor Agricultural Institution which offers same subjects with some polytechnics in Malaysia.

Hendro Retro Wulan and Hendrarso Sartono from the Indonesian Consulate-General in Kota Kinabalu were in Sandakan to extend the invitation to PSS to participate in the International Handicraft Trade Fair (INACRAFT 2019) in Jakarta from April 24 to 28.


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Sabah Education Dept aims 24 KPI this year

Wednesday, January 9th, 2019

Mistirine (7th from left, front row) posing with her officers, principals and teachers at the event today.

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Education Department hopes to attain 24 key performance Index (KPI) for this year.

Its director, Mistirine Radin said in her address held at the Sabah Federal Complex auditorium near here that this includes various sectors, and that one of them is to improve the minimum achievement of students in the UPSR examination for this year.

She added that the percentage of students acquiring the minimum grade D achievement in all subjects taken in the examination is still low.

Last year, the department only registered an achievement of 53.61 percent.

“Our aim for this year is 58 percent,” she said.

She also said that the department aims to increase the number of schools providing basic vocational training.

Presently, there are five schools providing the basic vocational education, she said.

She said that the department plans for 10 more schools to offer vocational training so that Sabah will altogether have 15 vocational schools.

At the same time, the department also targets to increase the percentage school attendance of students from 92.3 percent in 2018 to 93 percent, this year.

Later in a meeting with press members, Mistirine said that the department will be launching intervention programmes to ensure all the KPI set are achieved.

She also said that this will include going down to the grassroots and monitoring the situation at school levels.

She also spoke on the issue of stateless children in public schools in Sabah and stated that they will continue to use the present standard operating procedure that has been put in place to handle the issue.

She said that there were three category of students in Sabah – those are Sabahans / Malaysians with documents, non-Malaysians with documents, and local folks who are without documents.

She added however that she did not have the exact number students that are without any documents at schools in Sabah.

by Jenne Lajiun.

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Overcrowding, more schools needed

Sunday, January 6th, 2019

Sandakan: A total of 707 schools in Sabah have been categorised as dilapilated, said State Minister of Education and Innovation, Datuk Dr Yusof Yacob (pic).

“There are 1,296 schools in this State whereby 707 are in dilapilated condition. However, 120 schools had been repaired in 2018 making another 587 schools to be immediately repaired or replaced with new buildings.

“There are school buildings which had been erected some 30 to 50 years ago and still not replaced or repaired. Despite their poor condition, they are still operating to serve a rising number of students.

“However, the Ministry need a huge allocation in order to replace the buildings of the remaining 587 schools, ” he said, during his visits to dilapilated schools in Sandakan, Saturday.

Yusof said the Ministry is also seriously reviewing the over-populated schools which caused discomfort for both students and teachers

“During my recent visits to several schools in this State, I was dissappointed to know there are still many over-populated schools with one in Kota Kinabalu having some 2,000 students.

“Classrooms were filled with 60 students. Moreover, due to insufficient classrooms, there are schools still conducting two sessions for its learning and teaching.

“Unlike schools in peninsula, we were far left behind in terms of facilities. Every school should now conduct one session and must be cater around 700-800 students only in order for learning and teaching to be conducted smoothly.

“These over-populated schools are due to the increasing population. Therefore, we need to build more schools in high density areas.”

by Winnie Kasmir

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No more classes under canopies by next week – education officer

Friday, January 4th, 2019

Students attending a morning session class under one of the six canopies at Sekolah Kebangsaan Pekan Telupid yesterday.

TELUPID: District Education Officer Mahanin Osman said the problem of students attending classes under six canopies at Sekolah Kebangsaan Pekan Telupid will be resolved by next week as repairs to three damaged buildings were expected to be completed.

Mahanin said the canopies which were prepared by the Telupid District Education Office were only for temporary use.

“We thought that the repair work which started a week after school holiday started (early December) would be completed before school reopened this year. I had personally inspected the repairs being carried out and everyone involved had worked very hard to complete the work as soon as possible.

“However, due to certain circumstances, the work was not completed in time. That is why we have prepared the canopies to be used temporarily. The three blocks (Block A, B and C) should be ready to be utilised by next week, God’s willing,” he said.

The roofs, ceilings and floors of the three blocks were seriously damaged by a storm on June 18, last year.

A total of 452 students from morning and afternoon sessions (a total of sixteen classes) are currently utilising six canopies for teaching and learning session since the first day of school on Wednesday.

Mahanin assured parents that the students are safe and under control despite having to study in the open.

Meanwhile, SK Pekan Telupid headmaster, Dominic Nara said that teaching and learning sessions were conducted smoothly.

“Classes were conducted as usual, no problem. The only problems are the weather, and some students may have difficulties hearing the teachers in front; but all these (problems) are temporary. We also have excellent teachers, and students are very eager to learn, so we do not face any major problem because of this.

“The repair work was only initiated in December because we do not want to affect teaching and learning sessions of the students,” he said.

by Rebecca Chong.

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462,052 students commence schooling in Sabah

Friday, January 4th, 2019

Kota Kinabalu: A total of 462,052 students commence their school session for this year at 1,074 primary and 222 secondary schools in Sabah.

State Education Director Mistirine Radin said from the total, 32,264 were Year One pupils while 45,883 students were in Form One.

“Another 2,387 primary school pupils are attending the Integrated Special Education Programme (PPKI) while 2,273 are in such secondary schools,” she said.

She added that so far all schools are operating smoothly with monitoring by department officers as well as district education officers.

She said her visit to five schools in Kota Belud found the schools were operating as such usual.

Meanwhile, hundreds of pupils and their parents in Telupid some 200km from here, were shocked and disappointed to find no proper classrooms available on the first day of school.

Some 800 pupils of SK Pekan Telupid had been studying in makeshift classrooms housed under canopies since the roof of a school building block collapsed following a thunderstorm and strong winds in June last year.

A father, Dadie Ismail, said that he found it disappointing that the damaged school block has not been repaired despite the school holidays the past month.

“I thought the repair works would be carried out during the past school break but now, we came back to find that our children still have to go to class under the canopies,” he said.

He said what made it worse was that it rained heavily not long after the pupils arrived in school for the first day of the 2019 session on Jan 2.

Dadie said he hopes the Education Department and the state government would look into this matter immediately. In another district, in the interior areas of Sook, Keningau, a pre-school building was razed to the ground following a fire at about 3pm.

Sabah Fire and Rescue Department operations chief Khatizah Rahaban said in a statement that it was lucky no preschoolers were there during the incident at SK Nandagan.

“The affected building housed 18 pupils but they had all gone home when the fire broke out,” she said.’


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