Posted tagged ‘vernacular school’

DONG JIA ZONG group has shown the exit door to MCA

March 28, 2012

Yesterday (25/3/2012) the Chinese community made a strong presence at the DONG JIA ZONG ground in Kajang protesting at the inaction for 40 years by ministry of education to resolve the problem of temporary and not enough trained teachers in Chinese schools. The strong gathering and the fiery and firm speeches from the Chinese education umbrella group would have sent clear message of how this community feels over the inaction and empty promises.  The goose of deceit and lies by the ministry of education to Chinese schools has finally come to roast them just before the 13th general election. Tamil schools are worse off then Chinese schools but the community is blissfully ignorant and living in a make believe world where all are fine. Well, unless we become informed and act firmly, nothing is going to change for Tamil schools under UMNO BN rule.

MCA president has commented that Dong Jia Zong need not organize such a gathering for it would not serve any purpose. The deputy education minister and MCA youth chief Wee Ka Siong attended the gathering and was booed and heckled each time the speakers took a jab at the ministry of education. Wee lamented later that the rally has been hijacked by the opposition to attack the government. These episodes reveal that the MCA has been outcast by the Chinese community.  MCA is like MIC. It’s all about self and business interest at the expense of the community and serving UMNO, the oppressor, obediently. Despite the increase in student intake in Vernacular schools, the numbers of Chinese and Tamil schools have been reduced by the ministry. MCA did not protest but pretend to take action.

More and more non Chinese parents are sending their children to Chinese schools. It is estimated that 20% of Chinese school students are non Chinese. Chinese schools are built with the support of the community and they have made a success story out of it.  There are more non Chinese in Chinese schools than non Malays in national type schools. They are more multi racial in numbers compared national schools. This is because Chinese schools have provided higher teaching standards. Unfortunately those in the education ministry did not buck up to improve the national schools. Instead they were busy thinking how to politicize education and abolish vernacular schools.

Ministry of education was never keen to support vernacular schools. They started sending non Chinese teachers to Chinese schools so that they can change the medium of instruction gradually. They deliberately delayed the training of teachers in vernacular schools. Ministry of education has never implemented multi culturalism and plurality in their education policy. The Dong Jia Zong chief put it bluntly in his speech that the ministry did solve the teacher shortage because it did not have the political will.

Yet MCA and MIC were holding the shoulders high thinking that they are protectors and guardians of vernacular schools. They will make vernacular schools to kowtow to UMNO racist agenda. MCA and MIC must be removed before that happens. It’s now or never.

Senator S. Ramakrishnan



February 14, 2012

There have been calls to revamp and overhaul Remove Class for some time from various quarters but the ministry has not initiated any study on the effectiveness of this transitional classes. The ministry of education has brought about a sea change in the syllabus, pedagogy and medium of instruction in the schooling system but left out the remove classes untouched in the last 55 years. Parents, teachers and students have lot to say about the need to transform remove classes. But the ministry of education is not paying any attention to these concerns and grievances.

Students from vernacular schools who fail to obtain a minimum grade “C” for Bahasa Malaysia in their Ujian Pencapaian Sekolah Rendah (UPSR), are put in remove classes for a year before moving on to Form One. Pupils in Chinese and Tamil schools take BM papers of a lower standard in their UPSR. That’s why their grades below “C” are considered not on par with the grade “E” obtained by pupils from national schools.

In SRJK(T) Bukit Beruntung, Hulu Selangor, out of 72 students who completed standard 6 last year only 25 entered Form one while rest to remove classes. That’s about 65% of standard six students entering remove classes due to poor proficiency in Bahasa Malaysia. I am surprised that this very high number of Tamil school students going to Remove Class due to poor proficiency in Bahasa Malaysia did not raise alarm bell among Tamil school teachers, Headmasters and ministry officers for the past 55 years. The dropout rate among Remove Class pupils is high. If a Chinese remove class student drops out, he has many options to come up in life. Imagine the Tamil Students who drop out of Remove classes, where can he/she go in this racially segregated country. Tamil School headmasters must take remedial actions in school so that students are proficient in Bahasa Malaysia and will enter Form one and not remove classes. Tamil Schools were the bastion of MIC from 1957. They messed up the education of Tamil school children for their political survival.

Another weakness in remove classes is the teachers do not know the students mother tongue thereby creating communication problem between teachers and students. The poor communication hinders the learning and teaching for weaker students thus making the whole transition process ineffective. This creates the frustration in students and they don’t know where to complain. From here begins truancy, no interest in studies, vandalism etc. The students will then be blamed. Parents too are unable to help. Students eventually may drop out and join thugs; drug pushers etc and ruin their life.

Remove classes lesson plans must be restructured to capture student’s interest. Students are the key stakeholders. Unfortunately they don’t have any say in this matter. Since Remove classes are for weak and slow learners, the teachers must know student’s mother tongue and be specially trained to handle weak students. The gross negligence this far on the part of ministry of education is the single most contributing factor for the ineffectiveness of remove classes in improving the proficiency of Bahasa Malaysia and high number of dropouts. Teachers and headmasters in Tamil schools are obsessed with get 7As and neglect the weaker students. Weaker students are larger in numbers and therefore there must be strong focus on this group. The community must wake up to this realty and do the needful. We must stand firm in demanding the ministry of education to transform Remove classes into effective transitional and probationary classes. The community must wake up. It’s now or never.

Senator S. Ramakrishnan


Press statement on Mr Khairy, know what you are talking.

November 14, 2011

UMNO youth leader Encik Khairy jamaluddin  says that children are segregated by race with a parallel schooling system and thus proposed a single school system which would provide mother tongue education. Sounds very logical and appealing that we are all Malaysians therefore our children must study in the same school to foster better relationship and understanding. The UMNO representatives think that Tamil and Chinese schools are the root cause for racial disunity in this country. I wonder whether Khairy Jamaluddin ever wondered why vernacular schools have become very popular alternative to many Malay parents and non Malay parents of late. I was told there about 70000 Malay students in Chinese schools. Khairy Jamaluddin should meet these parents and find out why they are sending their children to vernacular schools. But these UMNO leaders who are like the frogs in the well think that their thinking is the best, just cannot understand why the non Malay parents insist on vernacular education.

The Chinese and Indian parents send their children to Tamil/ Chinese school because they are worried that the quality of teaching and learning in national schools is not comparable with that of the Tamil/Chinese schools. There are lots of elite Malay students who now study in international and private national schools. There are also Malay parents who have initiated organized campaign for the return of PPSI and bilingual school system. It shows that all is not too well in national schools. UMNO which holds the power steering of education ministry must put the national schools in order before opening their mouth. Don’t always find fault with others. Many times the faults are their own. So if the non Malay parents and some Malay parents don’t patronize national schools, it is time to introspect and find out the root cause.
The teaching and learning in Tamil and Chinese schools encourages and promotes the students to learn mathematics and science. They are given a lot of homework and school work. Practice makes perfect is the motto. The teachers in these schools are concerned about the welfare and performance of their students and the Indian and Chinese parents and also some Malay parents feel from their experience that the environment in the national school is not comparable with that of the Tamil and Chinese schools. It is just like if one product is not selling well and the customers not coming, we must re-examine and improve our product and not find fault with customers. That is the way we can succeed.
In addition, from the parent’s experience, national schools are not serious about teaching POL. Usually in national schools, POL is taught after school session or on Saturdays. This shows that the national schools are not serious about the teaching of Tamil and Chinese languages and the parents are worried that if they send their children to national schools, their mother tongue is lost. In Singapore, there is no Tamil/Chinese school. But the students in that country can speak and write their mother tongue well. This is because their national school takes this task seriously and makes the learning of vernacular language compulsory to all students in their national schools. The government has proven that it is serious about the learning of vernacular language in the national schools. Therefore, no one wants Tamil/Chinese school. But in Malaysia, the parents of Indian and Chinese students do not trust the government because for the last 50 years, they have not shown any sincere effort in teaching vernacular languages in national schools. Can the Minister of Education layout the plans to improve the teaching of vernacular languages in national school?
Moreover, the national schools have become very lslamic in character with total disregard for the feelings of non Malay children studying there. This is one of the reasons why Indian and Chinese parents refuse to send their children to study in national schools. Can the Minister of Education address this concern and fear of Malay, Chinese, and Indian parents?  The following activities in national schools drive away non Malay children from national schools.
1.     While reciting prays in morning assembly the Head Master/mistress should remind the non Muslim students to pray to their own God. Do not ignore them. Do unto others what you want others do to you.
2.    There are lot of signboards written in Jawi surrounding the school, especially in the rural area. Does the HM expect the non Malay children to read these signboards?
3.    There are a lot of prayers during school duration – when the Muslims pray, can the HMs or teachers remind the non Muslims to prayer to their own God. Do not ignore. The teachers treat them as though the non Muslim children do not exist in the school.
4.    The teachers entering classes only acknowledge and greet the Muslim students and straight away start teaching without greeting the non Muslim students as though they don’t exist in the class. Teachers are gurus and therefore they must like behave like one. If this is the attitude of teachers, why blame non Muslim parents?
5.    During festival or religious celebration – there are only programs for Muslims but don’t have any class or programs for non Muslims students. These non Muslim kids waste the whole day doing nothing but lazing around.
6.    When quoting or showing examples, the teachers just quote from Muslim scripts or Islamic books but do not even mention about the non Muslim leaders. The contributions of non Muslim leaders in the field of politics, social, science, and so on are ignored. May be the teachers themselves don’t know. But they should be aware of this if they want the Indian and Chinese parents to send their children to national schools.
7.    During the JQAf – the non Muslim students go to QI class and they are allowed to do their own work because the teachers don’t know what is the syllabus if QI.
8.    Name tags of the teachers are also in Jawi. How can the non Muslim students read Jawi?
9.    Canteen – there are non Muslim students who don’t eat beef and some are even vegetarian. There are no tags that indicate what meat is served. Not bothered about the sensitivity of other races. During the Hari Raya Haji festivals, cows are also slaughtered openly in schools. Speaking up against this act is sensitive. 
10. The numbers of non Muslim teachers are very minimal in the national schools. Why can’t the ministry increase the non Muslim teachers in national schools to attract more non Malay students so that they can handle the QI classes, moral classes etc.
With all these practices in national schools which are totally incompatible with the expectation of non Malay and some Malay parents how do Encik Khairy jamaluddin and other proponents of national  schools expect national schools to be overflowing with non Malay students. Encik Khairy jamaluddin and his supporters must put their house in order before preaching others.