Archive for the ‘Education’ Category

214 school days and 73 holidays for next year.

Thursday, September 13th, 2018

PETALING JAYA: School will reopen in all states on Jan 2 next year and a day earlier in Johor, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu.

According to the Education Ministry’s website, there will be 214 school days and 73 holidays in 2019 (see chart).

School heads can apply for four days of cuti peristiwa (occasional holiday), which need not be replaced on another day.

They can also apply for cuti ganti (replacement holiday), which will require the approval of the respective state education departments.

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Best practices from top minds in sports.

Sunday, July 1st, 2018
Staff, students and visitors taking part in the interactive exercise class during the Health and Fitness Expo.

Staff, students and visitors taking part in the interactive exercise class during the Health and Fitness Expo.

EXPERTS in physical education and sports from all over the world were in Kuala Lumpur recently to attend the Third International Federation of Physical Education (FIEP) Asia Conference on Physical Education and Sports 2018.

Hosted by Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC), the gathering brought top scientists, experts and students together where they shared and discussed ideas and best practices in the field of physical education and sports.

This was carried out over two keynote sessions, three plenary sessions, six regular sessions, 47 parallel sessions and 13 poster presentations.

The conference with the theme “Physical Education and Sports Help Build a Healthy Society”, offered networking opportunities with 100 leading experts, inspiring speakers and researchers from across the globe such as the United States, United Kingdom, Japan, Sweden, Ireland, Singapore, Australia and Slovakia.

The conference was held in 2014 and 2016 at Kogakuin University in Japan before TAR UC was offered the honour of hosting the third edition in partnership with FIEP Europe.

TAR UC is the second higher education institution to have ever hosted this conference.

Prof Dr Raha Abdul Rahim who is director of Excellence Planning for Higher Education Institutions Division, Department of Higher Education under the Education Ministry, was present to officiate at the conference.

She commended TAR UC for successfully bringing the prestigious conference to Malaysia to promote a healthy lifestyle and at the same time, support its aspiration to be a sports powerhouse.

“Physical fitness is a lifelong activity.

“I strongly believe there is a lot to offer and learn from this conference through its network of contacts, experts and exchange of ideas among individuals and organisations,” she said.

This is in line with Malaysia’s aim to promote a healthy lifestyle and eventually become a sporting nation in the future, she added.

TAR UC vice president Assoc Prof Dr Ng Swee Chin in her in the welcome speech, elaborated on the importance of the conference in relation to the learning and teaching of physical education.

“This conference highlights the importance of a healthy lifestyle through physical activity and sports in society.

“I hope that we can adopt some of the good practices presented in this conference and put them into our implementation plan for the diverse modes of education including physical education in TAR UC,” she said.

Dr Ng said the conference is part of the run-up to TAR UC’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2019.

“TAR UC will be celebrating its Golden Jubilee Anniversary.

“This conference is certainly a wonderful addition to our calendar of Golden Jubilee celebration activities,” she said.

During the conference, three TAR UC staff from the Faculty of Applied Sciences received special awards for their dedication in the field of physical education and sports.

Assoc Prof Dr Wee Eng Hoe was conferred the Medial Manuel Gomes Tubino Award for his immense contribution to the field, while Assoc Prof Dr Loke Chui Fung and Dr Ler Hui Yin were awarded the FIEP Commemorative Medal for their contributions to the development of physical education and sports at the international level.

In conjunction with the conference, a Health and Fitness Expo 2018 was also held at the TAR UC Kuala Lumpur Main Campus.

With the theme “Healthy Living for a Better Tomorrow”, the expo featured 27 exhibition booths showcasing various elements on a healthy lifestyle such as nutrition, sports gear, innovative exercises, supplements, health monitoring, physiotherapy and many more.

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Dr Mohd Gazali takes over as secretary-general.

Sunday, July 1st, 2018

DATUK Dr Mohd Gazali Abas (pic) has been appointed the new secretary-general of the Education Ministry.

He takes over from Datuk Seri Alias Ahmad who went on mandatory retirement on May 22.

Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Dr Ali Hamsa, in a statement, said Dr Mohd Gazali was previously the secretary-general of the Human Resources Ministry.

He had been in the civil service for 32 years since joining the Administrative and Diplomatic Service on Jan 13, 1986, he said.

“He has gained extensive experience in economic and financial management as well as human capital development,” he said.

Dr Mohd Gazali had also served as the National Institute of Public Administration director; Human Resources Ministry deputy secretary-general (operations); Economic Planning Unit Human Capital Development Section director and Network Asia Pacific Schools and Institutes of Public Administration and Governance executive director.

Dr Mohd Gazali holds a Bachelor of Economics degree from Universiti Malaya, a Master’s of Business Administration (Finance) from the University of Nottingham, United Kingdom and a PhD in Global Information and Telecommunications from Waseda University, Japan.


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Don’t spoil your child

Sunday, May 20th, 2018
Children should be taught about the concepts of responsibility and accountability from an early age. FILE PIC

RECENTLY, a Twitter user uploaded a photo of a banner hanging on the gates of a school in Subang Jaya, and it went viral for all the right reasons.

The banner read, “If you are delivering your child’s forgotten lunch, books, homework, shoes, instruments, etc., please TURN AROUND AND LEAVE. Your child will learn to solve problems and take responsibility for the consequences in your absence. Thank you.”

When I saw it, I couldn’t agree more.

Clearly, the school was prepared to face potential backlash or, at the very least, harsh criticism from parents, otherwise the banner wouldn’t have been hung on the school gates in the first place.


When I was growing up, my parents did a good job in teaching me the concepts of responsibility and accountability. I would be given reminders in matters pertaining to school, house chores and everything else in between. However, if I forgot to do something important, I had to accept the responsibility and impending punishment.

I remember once when I had forgotten to bring my homework to class. The teacher had reminded me countless times to bring it on that day, but it slipped my mind.

As much as I knew that I could try my luck by calling my mother, who was at home, to ask if she could bring it over to school and pass it to me, I knew that it would be a futile attempt.

I knew that I would probably get a lecture instead and nowhere closer to my homework, so I braced myself for the worst.

Needless to say, I was made to stand the entire period in class as a punishment for not doing what I was told to do.

I was the only one who had forgotten and the embarrassment hurt me more than anything else. That being said, I learnt my lesson. I told myself that I would never be careless again.

When I got home, I told my mother about the incident. To my astonishment, she admitted knowing I had forgotten something important because I had left it on my bed that morning. Feeling upset, I asked her why she had not just taken a drive to school to pass it to me.

She smiled and said that I wouldn’t have learnt my lesson if she had done that. I had no choice but to agree with her.

Her method could sometimes be misinterpreted as uncaring, but I knew that it was the right way to teach someone an important life lesson.

That was almost two decades ago.

So, when I saw the viral tweet, I appreciated the effort that the school has taken to instil good values and educate children to be accountable for their actions.

If there is one thing that I have noticed about the current generation of students, it is that many of them are sheltered and most times end up becoming rather spoilt.

They don’t bother to understand the concept of responsibility because they almost never need to bear the consequences of their actions, or lack thereof.

It is high time parents went back to how things were. Don’t spoil your child by being there a lot more than necessary. Your children will still be able to do fine in school if they forget to bring their pocket money or text- books. If anything, it would teach them to be more responsible in future.

I understand that parents do not want their children to endure pain and suffering, but, sometimes, it’s a necessary evil to educate them.

Instead of spoiling them, let them learn.

Instead of providing too much, let them seek.


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Dr Morni Thanks Teachers for their Genuine Contributions to Students Success.

Monday, May 15th, 2017

Teachers Day is celebrated on May 16 in Malaysia. This significant date is dedicated to all teachers throughout the country for their contributions in building our young generations; and also to commemorate the endorsement of the Razak Report in 1956; an educational proposal aimed at reforming the educational system in Malaya at that time (now Malaysia).

In conjunction with this auspicious occasion, Dr Morni Hj Kambrie (Founder and Chairman of SIDMA Sabah) on behalf of Azlina Ngatimin (Director, Corporate Marketing and Business Development), Azizah Khalid Merican (CEO), Managers, Heads of Departments, lecturers and staff of SIDMA College UNITAR Sabah would like to take this golden opportunity to convey our appreciation and to congratulate all teachers, regardless of whether they are in the Education Department, public or private sectors, colleges or institutions of higher learning as well as in pre-schools and nurseries, for their vital contributions towards the education and development of our young children, thus enabling them to excel holistically, and capable of achieving high level of personal well-being as well as being able to contribute to the harmony and betterment of their family, society and the nation at large.

Dr Morni also convey his appreciation to Datuk Hajjah Maimunah Hj Suhaibul, Sabah Education Director, and her team of officers in the department for their genuine and continuous efforts to improve and transform the education system of the state. Datuk Hajjah Maimunah, as the Director of Education for Sabah, has planned and implemented various programmes to increase parent’s awareness particularly in the interior part of Sabah on the importance of education to their children.

Dr Morni also praised the Education Department for their commitment inimplementing the 90:10 Policy, a policy that promoted the appointment of more local teachers, who will have more awareness and empathy with the needs of rural children, and are thus able to provide the necessary platform to ensure equity among these students in schools.

Dr Morni also take this chance to convey his “Thank You” and appreciation to District Education Officers; Secondary Schools Principals and Head Masters; as well as to all teachers and school staff who have assisted SIDMA College UNITAR Sabah graduates and trainees placed in their institutions during the students’ practicum term. Thank you very much for making a difference in our students as well as in our young graduates. We are indeed grateful to know our students learnt and gained much from experienced teachers and are able to reflect on each event encountered and shared, thus enabling them to grow professionally in character, maturity and discipline; thus adding values to the future and betterment of our young generations.

Dr Morni who has personally witnessed SIDMA College UNITAR Sabah graduates; both Bachelor of Education (Hons) and Bachelor of Education (Early Childhood Education (Hons) as well Diploma in Early Childhood Education teachers grow to possess hearts of compassion.

He also urged all SIDMA College and UNITAR Sabah Bachelor of Education (Hons) as well as Diploma and Bachelor Early Childhood Education graduates to follow the footsteps of their mentors and senior teachers; to equip themselves with characteristics of efficient teachers, be inspiring and ever willing to assist, support and equip the young with relevant knowledge, skills, attitudes and confidence in order for them to become efficient future leaders of the country in accordance to the 2050 National Transformation Programme.

How and what we teach our young children today will determine the attitude, values, skills as well as social awareness of tomorrow’s citizens of the country.

Thank you, Teachers. Thank you very much for your dedications, sacrifices and contributions to the success of each coming generation of the nation.

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Evolution of Education (Part 1)

Monday, April 24th, 2017

THE education system, as a whole, has faced challenges that changed its traditional status quo of seeking knowledge and wisdom to unravel truth of the mystery of Man and his internal and external universe. For the tenets of education have been to contemplate the mysteries of life and existence and to develop man’s intellect to respond to and control the environment.

The acquiring, exploration and development of such knowledge began with the shamanistic exposition of existence and its attendant manifestations; to explain phenomena and mysteries of life by ascribing them to supernatural powers, namely the spirits. It later moved to the monasteries, madrasahs and mosques where people acquired knowledge to better understand the Almighty’s intention.

These thoughts and knowledge were embodied into various oral traditions, written treatises, oracles, and religious compendiums, epics such as the RamayanaMahabharata and Homer’s Iliad. The Islamic world prides itself with the development of knowledge as reflected in the works of Rumi, Al Farabi, Al Ghazali, Ibn Rushid, Ibn Khaldum and the Prophet’s Hadiths.

Such knowledge became the basis of ideologies that governed man’s individual and communal living. Early knowledge was religiously inclined, but with scientific principles veiled in esotericism.

This repository of early knowledge, but with scientific principles veiled in esotericism that began in madrasahs, ashrams and churches as spiritual and divine knowledge, has gradually turned secular as Man acquire the intellect to explain the natural phenomena as not the work of spirits, but due to scientific reasons.

Then, developed institutions of knowledge that were referred to as university with the purpose of educating for life and for a profession and, which was also later recognised as ivory tower, the citadel of knowledge.

As a result, the initial religious based knowledge changed from the philosophical rhetorical discourse to the functional and utilitarian. And with the industrial revolution, it further transformed the perception of knowledge from the divine wonderment of ontology and its reflections on daily life to the materialistic mechanistic application of living.

The concept of the ivory tower was a catalyst in the development of secular knowledge. Science and mathematics, which initially were couched in esoteric, mystic and celestial domain from the time of the Greeks in such works as those of Archimedes, came to the fore as secular scientific disciplines that began with Galileo Galilei in the 16th Century. It gained momentum in the 17th Century with Isaac Newton and with Albert Einstein in the 19th and 20th century, among other notables physicists and mathematicians such as Carl Sagan, Richard Feynman and Stephen Hawking.

While Europe and the Islamic world were advanced in the quest for both religious and secular scientific knowledge, education and knowledge development were in its infancy in the Malay World including Tanah Melayu. It was mainly informal and experiential, acquiring knowledge for survival.

With the coming of the Arabic/Islamic influence to this region, education and the acquiring of knowledge was institutionalised in the religious schools called madrasah, where the Quran and other Islamic teachings were taught with Arabic and Malay as the medium of instruction.

The British brought in the concept of western education when they colonised Tanah Melayu and named it Malaya. The first English school, the Penang Free School, was set up in 1816, followed later by other grammar and technical schools. Alongside the English schools were the Malay medium schools located mainly in the rural areas but with a few in the urban vicinity.

Before the Second World War top local students pursued their tertiary university education in England while some went to Raffles College in Singapore set up in 1928. The best students pursued medicine at the King Edward College of Medicine in Singapore, which was established in 1905.

University of Malaya was established in 1949 in Singapore after merging The King Edward College of Medicine with Raffles College. The rapid growth of the university necessitated the setting up of two divisions in January 1959, one in Singapore and one in Kuala Lumpur. These two divisions became separate institutions when the University of Malaya (Malaya) was established in January 1962.


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University Students Should Learn Social Entrepreneurship – Mary Yap

Friday, December 16th, 2016

SHAH ALAM, Dec 15 (Bernama) — Higher education institutions are urged to inculcate social entrepreneurship among students in efforts to produce graduates who are innovative, holistic and balanced.

Deputy Minister of Higher Education, Datuk Dr Mary Yap Kain Ching said the move was important for students to enable them to get closer to the community apart from making them more sensitive about social issues.

“The institutions and universities should guide the students in social entrepreneurship as it should be developed so that students can practice it even after they completed their studies.

“It is also important that students are able to generate new ideas on social entrepreneurship to help communities affected by natural disasters, either locally or outside the country,” she said when closing the ‘Disaster Management 2.0: Developing Social Entrepreneur’ convention organised by the University of Science and Management (MSU), here, today.

Social entrepreneurship refers to entrepreneurs whose success is not only measured by profit but also the benefits that can be shared with the public.

Meanwhile, MSU president Prof Tan Sri Dr Mohd Shukri Ab Yajid said that the convention was focusing on post-recovery for victims of natural disasters by using social entrepreneurship methods.

“This is the university’s efforts to produce excellent graduates not only from the academic point but also in terms of soft skills.


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Transforming through knowledge

Sunday, December 11th, 2016

EDUCATION is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world, said the late Nelson Mandela.

Sharing this sentiment, the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) has been on a quest to advocate the concept of ‘education for all’ since its inception in 1988.

COL is the world’s only intergovernmental organisation that strongly promotes the development and sharing of open learning and long distance education knowledge, resources and technologies.

It held the Asia Regional Consultation for Open Educational Resources (OER) conference in Kuala Lumpur last week.

The conference themed “Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education: From Commitment to Action”, was hosted by Asia e University (AeU) and held in partnership with Unesco, Slovenian National Commission for Unesco and Unesco Chair on Open Technologies for OER and Open Learning (Joef Stefan Institute, Slovenia) with support from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation (United States).

COL president and chief executive officer Prof Asha S. Kanwar said that OER provides quality material from anywhere in the world and should be made available for free so that “good educational material” are accessible by everyone.

“This must be made available free to everyone else so the best content, which can be used, reused, repurposed and translated, is accessible even by the remotest corners of the world, greatly reducing the cost and increasing access to education,” she said during the OER opening ceremony.

“In most cases, all the good teachers are in cities. The poor children in remote areas do not have access to them.

“However, if there is high quality content, both urban and rural area children have access to the same type of material. Thus, bridging the knowledge gap between both areas,” she pointed out.


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Put education front and centre

Sunday, September 18th, 2016
There is a lot that bickering Peninsular Malaysians can learn from the country’s indigenous people as we continue our Malaysia Day festivities.

There is a total of some 80 ethno-linguistic groups on both sides of the pond – making up 13.9% of the 31 million total population of Malaysia – each with its own culture and territory, but the orang asal of Sabah and Sarawak and the orang asli of Peninsular Malaysia have found a way to not only learn more about each other, but also unite.

The outcome of their “union” is a stronger stand to improve their lives and defend their rights, especially in the struggle for their ancestral land rights.

This co-operation is especially benefiting the orang asli community, who are arguably trailing behind their Sabah and Sarawak brothers.

Senator in charge of orang asli affairs Senator Isa Ab Hamid, however, believes strongly that the united efforts will be more effective if they can work closely with the authorities and administration.

“As an orang asli senator, my duty is to fight for the rights and welfare of the orang asli, but in many issues, I believe we can achieve more if we co-operate with the Orang Asli Affairs Department (Jakoa), state governments, other relevant agencies and non-governmental organisations.

“I really think being antagonistic and confrontational will not resolve anything. It’s better if we sit down to discuss and work together to resolve the orang asli issues and concerns,” he says.

It’s no surprise, however, that many of the indigenous groups are resorting to memorandums and demonstrations to highlight their struggle; the socio-economic conditions of the orang asli have not changed as much as the other communities in Malaysia in the last five decades. They are losing more and more of their ancestral lands, which are their main source of livelihood, to public and private development projects.

Coming from the Kuala tribe, Isa says he can relate to both sides of the fence.

“From experience, I have seen how working together with the authorities can help, and as an orang asli myself, I think I understand where the orang asli are coming from and what we need as well as what we want for our future,” says the 49-year-old former Jakoa Pahang director who was sworn in as a senator in April this year.

Malaysia voted for the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of the Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) in 2007 – incidentally Sept 13 was the ninth anniversary since the UNDRIP was adopted – which establishes a universal framework of minimum standards for the survival, dignity, well-being and rights of the indigenous, including the collective right to ownership, use and control of lands and other natural resources.


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Ministry releases school term dates for 2017

Saturday, September 3rd, 2016
PETALING JAYA: Parents will be able to plan their holidays, now that the Education Ministry has released its school term dates for next year.

Students go back to school on Jan 3 next year in all states except Johor, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu, where classes start on Jan 1.

Schools in states that observe Friday and Saturday as the weekend usually start classes or the holidays a day earlier (see chart above).

According to the ministry’s website, there will be 72 holidays and 204 school days in all states except Johor, Kedah, Kelantan and Terengganu which have 205 school days.

School heads can apply for four days of cuti peristiwa (occasional holiday), which need not be replaced.

They can also apply for cuti ganti (replacement holiday), subject to approval by the respective state education departments.

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