Dr M: Malaysian education policy creating rift between rich and poor

PETALING JAYA: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (pic) has lamented that the current educational policy has widened the gap between the rich and the poor as well as the different races.

In a post on his popular chedet.cc on Monday, the former prime minister said that the rich now speak in English while the poor do so in Malay, Chinese or Tamil.

“Strangely the language nationalists have not protested as they protest the use of English for Science and Mathematics,” he said.

The former prime minister said that Malaysia had a clear idea about education when it became independent in 1957 as the country wanted every Malaysian child to attend national schools where the medium of teaching would be Bahasa Malaysia.

“They would know and be close to each other, get used to their different cultures and be distinctly Malaysian,” he said, adding that English schools were allowed to go on for a time.

“The decision was political. Nothing in the Constitution provided for this. Then another Education Minister in 1971 decided to abolish Government secondary schools which teach in English,” Mahathir said.

This, he stressed, ultimately resulted in the children of different races losing all opportunities to grow up together.

Private schools using largely English as the medium were allowed to exist, he said, although Malaysian children were not supposed to go to them.

Mahathir said that against national policy, ministers’ children started going to private and international schools or to schools in the United Kingdom.

by RASHVINJEET S. BEDI.

Read more @ http://www.thestar.com.my/News/Nation/2014/11/18/Dr-M-education-policy/

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