Archive for the ‘Education, Sabah.’ Category

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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RM282,800 from Foundation to two education bodies, teachers

Monday, January 29th, 2018

Kota Kinabalu: The Progressive Education Foundation (PEF), a non-governmental organisation (PEF), on Saturday disbursed funds totalling RM282,800 to two educational organisations and teachers of Chinese primary schools and kindergartens in Sabah, for this year.

PEF Joint Consultative Council Chairperson Melanie Chia said the disbursement reflected the foundation’s continuous support for education empowerment in the State.

“We are grateful and thankful that PEF is able again to contribute to educational organisations and teachers in Sabah.

“A total of RM25,200 was given to the Montfort Training Centre (MYTC), RM10,600 to Kadazandusun Language Foundation and RM47,000 to 59 graduate teachers who successfully completed their training and are now serving in Chinese primary schools in the State as a token of appreciation and encouragement for taking up teaching.

“Apart from this, PEF also approved interest free loans to 27 serving kindergarten teachers throughout Sabah to enable them to take up a diploma course in childhood education for which we have set aside RM200,000,” she said at the handing over of cheques, here, Saturday.

While thanking PEF founder Datuk Seri Yong Teck Lee cum a member of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation, Melanie said the foundation has never stopped giving annual support to trainee teachers and educational institutions since it was launched in 1996.

by Hayati Dzulkifli.

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Most school dropouts unable to cope with syllabus – IDS

Friday, May 19th, 2017

KOTA KINABALU: Most school dropouts are from the lower socio-economic group unable to cope with the school syllabus, according to Institute for Development Studies (IDS).

Its chairman, Datuk Seri Clarence Bongkos Malakun cited the Malaysia Millennium Development Goals 2010 report, saying that over 90 per cent of those of lower secondary school age who are not in school are from the bottom 40 per cent of the income distribution.

“While 75 per cent of those who are of upper secondary school age but are not in school are from the bottom 40 per cent of the income distribution,” he said adding that those that are hit the hardest are from the rural areas.

Speaking at the Seminar on Gender and Development: Reaching the Dropouts, at a resort here yesterday, he said that another main factor contributing to dropout rate is the students’ inability to cope with the syllabus being taught in schools.

“Therefore, if we can give the children a good grasp of basic literacy and numeracy skills early in life, they will be less likely to drop out of school, and this could also mean that our future generation will have a brighter future. “Dropping out problem is more prevalent in the transition from Year 6 to Form 1, and during the subsequent years in secondary school, which amount to 20,000 every year.

“Similar situation is happening during the transition phase from Form 3 to Form 4 where more than 40,000 students dropping out of schools every year,” he said adding that this is mainly caused by the temptation to enter the labour force.

Meanwhile, in his welcoming remarks, IDS Executive Director / CEO, Datuk Mohd Hasnol Ayub said that while it is difficult to obtain official rates and data on dropouts, the education system needs to address the problem. He said that the last comprehensive study conducted on the issue was the Dropouts Report 1973 which was also known as the Murad Report by the Education Ministry (MOE).

“Little information is available about the students who dropped out of school and where they end up, which makes it difficult to calculate the true cost incurred.

“While the economic and financial costs of dropouts in Malaysia have not been calculated, it could be a large opportunity cost in the future as the country is already facing shortages of skilled and knowledge-based workforce in many key economic growth areas including service, manufacturing, and IT sectors.


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Poverty main cause of big dropouts – IDS chairman

Friday, May 19th, 2017

Front row, from second left: Clarence, Teo and Mohd Hasnol with the participants of the seminar.

KOTA KINABALU: More than 40,000 students in Malaysia dropped out of school during the transition phase from Form 3 to Form 4 every year, said Institute for Development Studies (IDS) Sabah chairman Datuk Seri Panglima Clarence Bongkos Malakun.

Additionally, he said there were nearly 20,000 dropouts every year in the transition from Year 6 to Form 1, between the ages of 11 and 12, and then within the subsequent years in secondary schooling.

“In absolute terms, thousands of students are still dropping out from the mainstream schooling system.

“Poverty is more commonly known as one of the major factors, while the temptation to enter the labour force is also another most common factor,” he said at the opening ceremony of a seminar on ‘Gender and Literacy Development: Reaching the Dropouts’ here yesterday.

The seminar was officiated by the Minister of Special Tasks Datuk Teo Chee Kang, who represented Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Musa Haji Aman.

Clarence said reasons of dropouts were many including lack of interest in  schooling, the inability to pay for education-related expenses and poor academic performance.

Even involvement of parents in a child’s education related activities at home, frequency of interaction of parents with school teachers, management and Parent Teachers Association (PTA), and parents’ opinions of education including technical and vocational education pathways are also considered among the reasons, he said.

“While data from the MOE show that the dropout rates are low in Malaysia, but the absolute number of students leaving the system before completing a full secondary education reaches into the thousands.

“Majority of these students are from low-income households, hindering their ability to improve upon their future socioeconomic status,” he said.

According to the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2025 (MEB), Clarence said approximately 36 per cent of each cohort does not reach the minimum achievement level desired by all students.

“This means that students from one particular cohort are no longer enrolled in the system or have not passed core Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) subjects.”

As a comparison, Clarence said in Korea for example, 98 per cent of those between the ages of 25 abd 34 had completed the equivalent of a high-school degree indicative of a negligible level of dropouts from the system.

“Whereas in Malaysia in 2011, only 56 per cent of the working age population in Malaysia had an SPM qualification or higher and a majority of these, about 65 per cent, had only an SPM qualification.”

H e said the Ministry of Education (MOE) revealed that one factor contributing to dropout rates was the inability of students to cope with the syllabus being taught besides poverty.

“If we can give children a good grasp of basic literacy and numeracy skills early in life they will be less likely to drop out of school.

“This could also mean that our future generation will have a brighter future.”

by Chok Sim Yee.

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My hope is to continue forward and drive up performance levels in this state – Jame Alip

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

KOTA KINABALU: The Sabah Education Department has outlined 12 areas of focus to hike up performance levels in the state including the achievements for public examinations such as the Ujian Penilaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR) and Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM).

Its director, Datuk Jame Alip said the Key Performance Index or KPI set for UPSR is to attain a State Average Grade of 2.20 and 65 percent of passes and for SPM to obtain a State Average Grade of 4.70 and 92 percent of passes. He pointed out that although Sabah has been making impressive improvements over the years it had yet to achieve the targeted KPI.

“We need to plan intervention programmes that will give high impact to push performance levels up and my hope is that this year we will continue to march forward and drive up performance levels in this state in tandem with other states in Malaysia,” he said.

Jame was speaking when delivering his address for 2016 at the Federal Government Administrative Complex here yesterday.

Those present included his deputy, Hajah Maimunah Haji Suhaibul, sector heads, education officers, principals and headmasters.

This year, the department has also set its sights on the LINUS 2.0 Programme, 21st Century Learning and the District Transformation Programme to ensure the quality of education continues to improve.

Further, it will focus on increasing the number of schools of Bands 1 and 2 while reducing those in Bands 5 and 6. “We want to focus on reducing the rate of truancy in schools, enhancing sports development and co-curriculum, enhancing basic Islamic education at the primary school level, improving management and co-ordination of public examinations as well as enhance our educators through psychology and counselling programmes,” said Jame.


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Wisma Pendidikan handed over

Thursday, June 19th, 2014

Kota Kinabalu: The newly-completed Wisma Jabatan Pendidikan Negeri Sabah was handed over to the State Education Department on Tuesday.

The RM45.5 million building was built under the 9th Malaysia Plan’s Education Development Projects and was due for completion in 2011.

However, contractors were forced to delay the hand-over by almost three years due to several technical problems.

Education Department Director Datuk Jame Alip in his keynote address during the hand-over ceremony, said while the delay was unavoidable at the time, future projects under the department will need to be monitored more closely especially when dealing with other infrastructure providers to prevent the same problem happening again.

“It is mind-boggling that some people needed more than a year to solve a problem, and the contractor was kept waiting. Even our Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman does not like delays.

“Rules are man-made and if there is a need to break the rules for the common good, it is better to do it. We must learn from experience especially with abandoned school projects,” he said.

Jame also said that while education is an important vehicle capable of propelling the country into a developed nation, it is an undeniable fact that Sabah is still behind in terms of school infrastructure compared to other states in Peninsular Malaysia.

“Nine states in the peninsula are equal to one Sabah, Putrajaya must understand this. Sabah must not be seen as equal, it must be a bit more than that. If in the peninsula they receive RM10 million, here the equivalent is RM50 million,” he said.

Similarly, he added, educational excellence is not driven merely by the quality of human resource development and good management but also supported by sufficient and conducive infrastructure.

Therefore, he hoped that the new administrative building could improve both the department’s effectiveness and its delivery system.

The 10-storey building, situated on Jalan Kompleks Sukan Likas, will accommodate 249 department staff and has ample parking space, a surau, a cafeteria and five meeting rooms.

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