Archive for the ‘Education, Sabah.’ Category

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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Keep them out of government schools

Sunday, December 30th, 2018

Penampang: Penampang PKR Youth has raised concern about the Government’s move to allow stateless children to enrol in schools beginning 2019, saying it will not only affect local students’ access to school facilities and their learning process but also give rise to many socio-political problems.

Its Deputy Chief Remysta Taylor said the issue of stateless individuals has been a pain for Sabah for decades and Sabahans do not want to see the Government making decisions which would make things worse.

“PKR Penampang Youth considers the move as a step backward in efforts to resolve the issue of stateless people in Sabah.

“The Education Ministry should realise that our people in Sabah have been burdened by this issue for decades. Why not implement policies which would assure us once and for all that this issue would finally be resolved.

“But instead of doing that, they’re welcoming them into our schools. For what reason, we just don’t know,” he said.

He was commenting on Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik who had reportedly gave his assurance that the enrolment of stateless children in government schools would not affect the local children’s educational opportunities and access to school facilities.

He had clarified that stateless children are those who not have identity documents but are the children of Malaysian citizens or one of their parents is a Malaysian.

Dr Maszlee had also said that the Ministry accepts such children on the condition that their parents submit a confirmation letter from the village head that the child is his or hers

Earlier, Parti Kerjasama Anak Negeri (PKAN) President Datuk Henrynus Amin also voiced opposition to the move saying that currently even local children hoping to be enrolled in some schools are turned away due to classrooms already bursting with up to 50 students in some.

Remysta said PKR Youth Penampang respects the right for every child to receive education as Malaysia is a signatory to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Child (CRC).

“We have nothing against it. But at the same time we want to suggest to the ministry to keep them out from our government schools. Besides, all this time we have been kind enough to allow them to start their own schools. All the ministry should do is just to monitor and regulate. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel,” he said.

According to him, there is fear among the local population that the policy could be abused or exploited by irresponsible parties for their personal gain.

“Sabahans are fed up with having to cope with this issue. We have high hopes on the new Government to resolve it for good. Don’t introduce a policy that will only perpetuate the fear and negative suspicion. It’s not good for nation building,” added Remysta.

by Leonard Alaza.

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‘I am doing this for all students’

Wednesday, October 31st, 2018

Kota Kinabalu: The former student who is suing her ex-English teacher for refusing to teach the English subject in her Form Four class for seven months said she did it to stop a “culture of fear and silence in schools and intimidation by the education authorities”

Stressing that it is time to end this unhealthy culture, Siti Nafirah Siman, 19, said: “I want every school to give the best education to students. If there is any teacher who did not enter a classroom this matter should be settled immediately. Teachers lose nothing if they do not teach. But we students lose everything if we do not get to learn.”

“The culture of fear for speaking up must end. Psychopathy culture with blackmailing and intimidating us must also be stopped,” Siti Nafirah told a press conference, Tuesday. It is the first time in Malaysia that a student is suing the education authorities from the teacher right up to the Minister for failing to ensure that the student’s constitutional right to education is fulfilled

“Without teachers, we cannot succeed, we fail to achieve our goals. Without teachers, we lose direction, we lose education. Without education, our lives are despicable and meaningless. For the sake of our generation’s future, what is more important than a teacher in a teaching class?” she said.

Siti Nafirah named former teacher Mohd Jainal Jamrin, a local, Hj Suid Hj Hanapi (in his capacity as principal of the SMK Taun Gusi), SMK Taun Gusi, Kota Belud District Education Officer, Sabah Education Director, Director General of Education Malaysia, Minister of Education Malaysia and Government of Malaysia as the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh and eighth defendant, respectively.

She filed the writ of summons at the High Court Registry through counsel Roxana Jamaludin on Oct. 16 and the first hearing is fixed for Nov. 19. Siti Nafirah said she was one of the 34 students in the Form Four Perdagangan class in 2015 in SMK Taun Gusi, Kota Belud who suffered because their English teacher refused to teach them from February to October.

“We were very stressed at that point because we feared we would fail our exam. We wanted to learn. We always looked forward to the presence of our English teacher in our classroom. Once in desperation, we tried to find a replacement teacher. The teacher only entered our class after months of abandonment, which was before the final examination for that year. “We all failed in the English subject in our final year examination that year because we did not know how to answer the questions,” she said.

“Today, I raise the voice of our generation who had been left alone. I represent the generation of students calling on all students in Malaysia to dare to defend their education rights.

“At the national level, I hope the education right of every student throughout Malaysia will be prioritised. Never again must they be subjected to this kind of persecution. When a teacher does not go to class, it destroys our education and our future.

She stressed that she appreciated the teachers’ sacrifices and work hard in giving them the best education but would not tolerate teachers who deny their rights until they fail in the examination.

“Even worse if the teachers are protected by the school because no action is taken. The teacher is still working at the same school and will still not go to the class to teach.

“Why did the school silence the case? Where is the accountability? Why did the principal not take action? Why did the District Education Office ignore us? Why did the State Education Department remain,” she said, adding these are questions she wants to see addressed in court when the trial starts.

“Quality education is our hope to change poverty. At SMK Taun Gusi, most of the students came from a difficult family. In that school too, most teachers have experienced misery and poverty as they become students like us. Now they are all successful and their lives are easier because they received good education,” she said.

Meanwhile, Roxana who was present in the event assisted by law intern Jubili Anilik, made a correction to an earlier news report regarding the Dual Language Programme (DLP) by stating that the said school was not under the DLP and that this case had nothing to do with the DLP but the right of students to learn being denied.

by Jo Ann Mool.

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Siti Nafirah is seeking, among others, a declaration that the first, second, fourth, fifth, seventh and eight defendants are in breach of their statutory duty under the Education Act by failing to; ensure that she is taught the English language during the period of Feb 2015 to Oct 2015; prepare her for examinations as prescribed under the Education Act.

She is also seeking a declaration that the first, second, fourth, fifth, seventh and eight defendants are in breach of their duty under Regulation 3C, 25, 26 Public Officers (Conduct and Discipline) Regulations 1913; a declaration that the act complained off by the first, second, fourth, fifth, seventh and eight defendants amounted to misfeasance in public office;


Thursday, October 11th, 2018

Gamers who participated in the mobile legend competition. – SNT Pix/Courtesy SIDMA College

PENAMPANG: Private colleges and universities in Sabah are invited to relocate to Penampang district.

Minister for International Trade and Industry, Datuk Darell Leiking said the district can be a new education hub for Sabah if more private colleges and universities can relocate to Penampang.

He said, if a given area has universities and colleges, then this will increase the number of people who are involved with the process of teaching and learning.

“By having more private colleges and universities in the Penampang, the parents can opt not to send their children to further their studies far away, thus generating potential cost savings in the process.

“I know for a fact that there are many successful managers and corporate leaders who studied at private institutions and they are equally good,” he said in his speech at the launch of the “SIDMA GOES LIVE” event which was organised by SIDMA College which is located at Jalan Bundusan, Penampang here.

His speech was read by his Political Secretary Pritchard Arthur Gumbaris.

In his speech, Darell commended and thanked the management of SIDMA College for relocating to Penampang from its original city campus which was at Jalan Lintas.

According to Darell, if any private education provider, be it college or university level are willing to relocate to Penampang, he is willing to meet them and invite the relevant authorities along, such as the District Officer or District Council so that they can lend whatever assistance necessary to make it easier for them to relocate.

The highlight of the event was the Mobile Legend Competition which was participated by 30 teams and won by the famous Borneo Dragon team, who walked away with the RM1,000 prize.

By Sitti Nor Azizah Talata


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Minister receptive to use of IBS for school projects

Monday, August 20th, 2018

Datuk Dr Yusof Yacob

KOTA KINABALU: The State Minister of Education and Innovation was receptive to the proposal of utilising Industrial Building System (IBS) to counter the urgent need of replacing dilapidated school building structures with new ones equipped with comfortable and conducive learning space.

During a courtesy call by The Institution of Engineers Malaysia (IEM) Sabah Branch and Association of Consulting Engineers Malaysia (ACEM) Sabah Branch recently, Datuk Dr Yusof Yakob said the ministry was eager to repair and upgrade run-down schools throughout the state in response to the many press articles on dilapidated schools needing immediate attention.

He looked forward to both the engineering institution and association to propose solutions and adding innovative features such as sustainable energy via solar system, stable internet connection and other technology advancement to bring up, especially the rural children to be at par with those in the urban areas which would boost the education level in the state with improved facilities.

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Be flexible in providing education to rural children – Jenifer

Sunday, August 19th, 2018

Jenifer at the stargazers booth.

KOTA KINABALU: Education in Sabah must be flexible enough to cater for children in the rural areas, said Assistant Education and Innovation Minister Jenifer Lasimbang.

She said that there were many alternative ways of attaining education such as homeschooling and community schooling rather than attending government school alone.

“There are many ways to do it for as long as we are not confined to a national policy then we can provide alternative way of attaining education.

“There are many solutions out there provided we are not tied down to one policy where you don’t have to send your kids to a government school.

“… and we cannot push towards compulsory schooling at the age of seven and must go to a particular school. We have to be flexible enough to cater for very rural areas,” she explained.

Jenifer also said that they had to explain to the federal government that the situation in Sabah was very different and highlighted that the state had a very challenging landscapes, and in the rural areas, one had to walk hours to get to a government school.

“Personally, I do not agree with children as early as seven years old staying at hostels, which is not positive for the development of the child but in pursuit of education, they have to let go off the family. So, it is very painful.”

“Even university students get a culture shock and what more for children who are just seven years old. That is a painful process for the child and for the family.”

“… we have to look at a solution and ask for leniency. Let’s negotiate terms because our goal, eventually is to have an educated society and we cannot force the children to walk four hours or stay in a hostel at the age of seven. It is not right for us to do that to the child and to the family,” she said, adding that technology could also be used to provide education.

“All of this we have to go through proper planning, there are great ideas out there but the most important thing is that whatever it is we want to implement involving education, especially for aged 18 and below, the students are children and we must look into it in the best interest of the child,” she said.

On discussions with Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik, she said the response to Sabah’s demands for education infrastructure was positive.

The demand was part of restoring Sabah’s rights under the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), she said.

Jenifer said the state was working to have an emergency fund from the federal education ministry which could be used for the immediate repairs of damaged school buildings due to natural disasters or fire, etc.

“We don’t have to wait for six months, (or) one year to fix it. If the state has the fund and we are given the jurisdiction to be able to fix RM2,000 roof, why can’t we do that? Why do we have to wait from KL (Kuala Lumpur) to make a decision and come back? Because we need the children go to school, so why not just give some small amount of money, no need for much, just to fix it,” she saidafter officiating at Space Odyssey which was organized by the management of Centre Point Sabah at the mall here yesterday.

The event also marked as the 28th anniversary of the mall and various activities were held, including Space X-Ploration Exhibition, Miss CP Ambassador and Annual Street Dance.

Space X-Ploration Exhibition was an effort by the Centre Point management in supporting the government foundation in cultivating space and innovation especially among the youth community, and among the exhibitors were Petrosains Playsmart Kota Kinabalu, Polytechnic KK and Sabah Stargazer.

For Miss CP Ambassador, 15 finalists were chosen for the grand finale on August 31 while the preliminary round for the dance competition will be on August 25 and all of the events will be held at the Palm Square, Centre Point.

by Safrah Mat Salleh.

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