Ministry of Education Malaysia, We Are Behind You!

31/03/2009

We strongly believe that as Malaysians we are very aware that quality education is of utmost importance to a nation. The whole idea of a good education system is to prepare out children so that they are better prepared to face the challenges of globalisation, liberalisation as well as the fast development in today’s information and communication technologies. The need to strengthen our nation’s economy in view of the global economic slowdown is becoming rather critical. To enable our nation to do this we needed competent and resilient human capital that is able to face the challenges locally and internationally. Naturally we hope that the Ministry of Education can provide our children an adequate education to enable them to overcome the challenges that they will face in future. The most obvious point that the Gerakan Mansuhkan PPSMI missed was that education policies and studies formulated during the pre-independence such as Barns Report and Penyata Razak (Post Independence) was very relevant and suitable during that era would need enhancement and upgrading to ensure that it remain suitable and relevant today. Policies were formulated for specific purposes. Why are we so resistance to change, especially a change for the better to avoid being left behind! Taking the analogy, if we were to look back at our history, we have those “sekolah bawah pokok” before independence, are we to say that our kids must study under those conditions because we manage to do well then … We, the majority of the parents thought that it would be more appropriate to review and improve on the policies to ensure that our education system can remain relevant to current day demand instead of some previous policies which will hinder our children’s future. On the part of cultural heritage, we have lots of other programmes and activities to ensure that our children can inherit their cultural heritage including their mother tongue! As responsible parent it’s our duty to do that for our own children and not to be dependent on the government to do our duty. Whatever said, we have faith in our cabinet and that our cabinet ministers are able to determine the best policies to ensure our nation’s future. As we are all aware, the Ministry of Education had 5 series of round table discussions to solicit the views of all the stake holders. During these round table discussions much had been said and views shared. One cannot force others to adopt his or her view if his/her views were seen as unacceptable and unbeneficial to the nation. Despite that the Ministry of Education had taken those views into consideration and also those research findings published and presented when they are formulating the cabinet paper. We are very convinced that any proposal that had evolved from this process would be a very sound one and have elements of the suggestions presented during the round table discussions. Furthermore, we urge GMP to give some credit to our cabinet as they are intelligent people and will go through the MoE’s proposal on PPSMI before approving it. Based on the attendance of the round table discussions, WE STRONGLY DISAGREE WITH GMP THAT THOSE WHO ATTENDED WERE TANGKAP MUAT but are very credible individual unlike those who had supported them in taking the matter to the streets. They are authority on Mathematics and Science education and not literature and language as what they have in GMP! To GMP please ponder on this FACT!

Some Half Truth in GMP’s Memorandum

27/03/2009

After going through the memorandum that GMP had submitted to the Yang Di Pertuan Agong, I found that there are lots of half truths that I need to explain to the general public. It is very unfair to reveal half the truth and make deduction from them.

It is true that the number of pupils answering in totally English in the 2008 UPSR for Science is 31.1%. This doesn’t mean that the rest of the pupils answer in Malay.  Only 16.5% of the candidates answers only in Malay. The balance 52.4% of the candidates answer in a mixed English and Malay language. Comparatively only 18.2% of the pupils answer in a mixed of Malay and English language in 2007. Similarly 53.4% of the pupils answer in a mixed of Malay and English language in the UPSR 2008, Mathematics paper comparing to 10.5% in 2007. This shows a significant increase in the competency of the pupils to answer the questions in English. This increase is notable due to the fact that the candidates for UPSR 2008 is the first cohort of pupils that fully followed the PPSMI programme from year 1 in 2003. Thus it would be grossly untrue to say that pupils cannot learn Mathematics and Science in English effectively.

Basically I can conclude that GMP has a hidden agenda which is not related to the effective learning of Mathematics and Science by Malaysian pupils or the status of the National Language but something that only Datuk Hassan and Samad will know or its like what I have mentioned in my earlier postings.

Things Should Calm Down…

20/03/2009

I was told that the GMP leaders namely Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad (Ex-Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka’s Director) and Datuk A Samad (Sasterawan Negara) had a close door meeting with our Minister of Education yesterday. Browsing through today’s papers, and since there is no big news about it, I think they didn’t have any fights …

I was told later that the meeting lasted over an hour and much had been discussed. From PPSMI to curriculum transformation to exams and evaluation. The Honorable Minister of Education had accepted their explanations that the had no intention of  being used by others.The Honorable Minister of Education also stated that the Ministry of Education had never jepordise the status of Bahasa Malaysia as the national Language. Further more, the Ministry’s door is always and had been open all the time for discussions if there are any grievences and there is never a need for anyone to take anything to the streets if they are sincere in their cause!

Even though these two seniors manage to convince our Minister of Education that they are sincere in their fight, we are still very skeptical about their sincerity especially after they had pledge to the Parliament and His Royal Highness The Yang Di Pertuan Agong in their memorandum that they will not take this issue to the streets then have a huge riot by their professional demostrators!

We really hope that the “two” had come to their senses and will remain retired professionals. We really hope that they won’t turned on their own words and go to the streets again to create havoc for the  very unfortunate KL public.

Pendedahan mengenai GMP, Dr Hasan berbohong – Latest

16/03/2009

Saya percaya penuh kepada demokrasi dan kebebasan rakyat untuk bersuara, mengadakan tunjuk perasaan, dan kebebasan akhbar. Lakukan dengan aman, sopan dan bertanggungjawab.
Namun demikian, saya tidak boleh menerima apa yang berlaku pada hari Sabtu. ‘Perhimpunan halal’ menentang PPSMI dijadikan perhimpunan politik dan seterusnya dijadikan ‘perarakkan haram’ untuk memberi kacamata buruk rakyat terhadap pemerintah dan pihak pengaman awam.
Kalau sudah berjanji dengan polis hanya perhimpunan dan beberapa saja yang akan hantar memorandum, kenapa dilanggar perjanjian itu? Dari gaya ianya diatur, strategi dan personalitinya yang terbabit, ianya sama dengan Perarakkan Bersih pada tahun 2007. Perhimpunan dan ‘perarakkan haram’ itu mempunyai agenda disebaliknya.
Memang tujuan asal untuk menimbulkan kekecohan jalanraya dengan dipinta disembur water cannon dan gas pemedih mata. Di sini saya bersetuju dengan tindakan polis dan sepatutnya lebih berkeras supaya ‘public order’ dihormati dalam amalan kebebasan bersuara.

Dato Dr Hasan Ahamd dalam sidang akhbar semalam (dalam video) cuba menafikan perhimpunan dan perarakkan haram itu didalang oleh pembangkang. Katanya, apa yang terjadi di luar kuasa pihak penganjur. Padanya, konon satu penghinaan untuk mengelar dirinya dan mereka yang datang sebagai boneka kepada tok dalang.
Saya kata dia berbohong. Pantang besar saya apabila orang berbohong. Walaupun saya tidak bersetuju sangat dengan PPSMI, saya tiada toleran kepada pembohong. Maka saya akan dedahkan seluruhnya mengenai Gerakan Memansuhkan PPSMI (GMP).

Saya tidak peduli apa akibat pendedahan ini sebab Dr Hasan sanggup bersekongkol dengan mereka-mereka yang perjuangan politik khusus untuk mencabul dan menghancurkan hak dan kepentingan Melayu dan Pribumi, yang tertera dalam Perlembagaan.

Pada hari itu, Dr Hasan sendiri yang mengapi-apikan lebih untuk ikut dan menyamar sebagai pelancung. Sepanjang dia berdalih-dalih untuk meminta lebih ramai dapat ikut ke Istana Negara sebelum ‘perarakkan haram’ itu, ianya menunjukkan sudah ada niat untuk melanggar ‘perjanjian’ dengan polis.
Pada hari itu, beberapa pemimpin politik timbul dari corok-corok mana untuk berarak. Bukankah itu suatu yang terancang?
Fitrahnya mana-mana pihak penganjur perlu bertanggungjawab di atas apa yang berlaku dan Dr Hasan tidak boleh berlakun seolah-olah dia tidak terkawal keadaan hingga menjadi ‘perarakkan haram’ hingga polis terpaksa mengawal keadaan dengan menyembur air dan gas pemedih mata.
GMP adalah satu gerakan terancang dari perbincangan pada Disember 30hb, 2008 di Yayasan Penataran Ilmu antara beberapa pertubuhan, parti politik dan pejuang bahasa. Pertubuhan yang terlibat adalah Kesatuan Sekerja DBP. PAS, PLM, PKPIM, ABIM, GAMIS, TERAS, dan PPBUM. Mereka bersetuju untuk mengadakan Himpunan 100 Ribu bagi menyerahkan memorandum kepada Agong.
Satu pertemuan telah diadakan dengan Dato Dr Hasan Ahmad pada Januari 8hb, 2009 di Yayasan Karyawan. Di situ dia bersetuju untuk menjadi Pengerusi Badan Induk GMP. Dalam satu Mesyuarat di bilik mesyuarat Dewan Undangan Negeri Selangordi Shah Alam pada Januari 20hb, 2009, diumumkan anggota ahli-ahli Jawatankausa terlibat.

Selain Dr Hasan sebagai Pengerusi, Jawatankausa Badan Induk terdiri dari Prof Dr Shahril Mat Zin (Timbalan Pengerusi), Prof Emritus Abdullah Hassan (Naib Pengerusi) Hasni Abas (Setiausaha) dan Suhaizan Kaiat (Penolong Setiausaha). Selain Suhaizat yang merupakan penggiat PAS, pemegang utama Jawatankuasa ini kelihatan seolah-olah terdiri Pejuang Bahasa. Dalam ahli Jawatankausa, ada anggota YB Dato Nasaruddin Mat Isa (Timbalan Presiden PAS) dan Mustafa Kamil Ayub (Naib Presiden PKR).

Peranan parti politik lebih ketara dalam Jawatankuasa Pelaksana yang mengatur strategi perhimpunan dan ‘perarakkan haram’. Mereka terdiri dari Hasni Abas (Pengarah), Suhaizan Kaiat (PAS, Tim. Pengarah), Saifullah (S/uaha), Faisal (Pen. S/Usaha), Akmal Hisham (Pen S/U Media), Kamaruzzaman (Bendahari), Sany, Abd Razak, Wasif, Firdaus, Kamal, Wan Faisal, dan YB Yusmadi (PKR Balik Pulau).

Walaupun pejabat Pena menjadi urusetia tetapi peranan penggiat politik sangat ketara. Pada perbincangan itu, jumlah 100,000 tidak dijangka boleh tercapai kerana ia memerlukan masa dan kewangan yang banyak. Pada malam itu, Timbalan Presiden PAS hanya sedia memberi komitmen seramai 10-15,000 ahli PAS. Manakala PKR hanya berupaya membawa dalam 5,000 orang.
Dengan demikian, mereka perlu berusaha dan satu roadshow telah dirancang seluruh negara Selangor, Pahang, Perak, Kedah Johor, Kelantan dan Wilayah Persekutuan tuntuk setiap hari minggu dari Januari 31hb hingga Februari 21hb. Perhimpunan kecil di Sogo dan Majlis penyerahan Memorandum kepada Anwar Ibrahim dan sidang akhar di Parlimen memang sudah terancang.
Mengikut dokumen rancangan yang disediakan oleh penggiat Suhaizan Kaiat, penggiat PAS, satu acara akan diadakan pada Mac 14hb anjurkan oleh Pemuda PAS Pusat, seminggu sebelum Perarakkan Gerakan Mansuh ISA pada Mac 21hb. Dari butiran ini, jelas sekali peranan pembangkang sangat besar dari awal hingga Mac 14hb ini.

Sebelum ada suara-suara nak menuduh saya berbohong dengan butir-butir ini, biar saya beritahu sekali bujet kewangan GMP. Betul ke tidak bujetnya RM85,800 dan mereka mengharapkan sebanyak RM40,000 dari kerajaan-kerajaan negeri bawah Pakatan Rakyat? Kalau tidak tahu, baik diam saja.
Kalau hanya 29 NGO yang terlibat (termasuk Kumpulan Pendidikan Cina dan Tamil), tidak mungkin jumlah hadhiran boleh mencapai 20,000 yang dianggarkan. Hanya parti pembangkang yang mempunyai organisasi, infrastruktur dan jumlah tenaga untuk membolehkan perhimpunan haram sedemikian.
Sebagai deal untuk membantu pejuang bahasa, mereka kena bersetuju untuk memberikan PAS dan PKR untuk gunakan sebagai platform politik mereka dan ini termasuk merempuh polis dan buat perarakkan haram hingga disembur air dan gas pemedih mata. Ini diambil peluang sebagai propaganda untuk menghina pemerintah dan polis. Jangan hairan mereka akan melabel UMNO sebagai tidak memperjuangkan orang Melayu kerana PPSMI.
Kalau tidak kerana agenda pendalang, bukankah bodoh kelihatan orang Melayu merusuh atas isu yang sedang ditangani dan masih belum dibuat keputusan muktamad? Tidaklah juga niat pihak berkuasa untuk merendahkan Bahasa Melayu?

Tidak kah terfikir kita, dimanakah mereka yang konon menjuangkan bahasa Melayu ketika apabila DAP menuntut bahasa Cina dan Tamil diberi kedudukkan yang sama untuk papantanda rasmi? Nik Aziz bersetuju dan Anwar Ibrahim pun bersetuju.

Apa ceritanya bila Anwar mengkokokkan Ketuanan Rakyat yang mengetepikan Ketuanan Melayu yang merupakan sebahagian Perlembagaan dan kedaulatan negara ini? Kenapa mereka berdiam apabila DAP membuat fitnah jahat menuduh amalan Apartheid? Dalam Apartheid, minoriti yang menguasai ekonomi.
Pejuang Bahasa adalah yang sebenarnya Nasionalis yang bersetuju dengan kedudukkan agama Islam, hak-hak Melayu, kedudukkan Raja, askar Melayu dan tanah rizab Melayu. Ini semua adalah sebahagian dari Ketuanan Melayu. Kenapa mereka bersekongkol mereka yang menentang Ketuanan Melayu dan berslogan atas nama Ketuanan Rakyat? Nik Aziz juga yang berkata Bumiputera itu tidak penting lagi dan ini bertentangan dengan hak dalam Perlembagaan.
Tak payahlah Dr Hasan nak berbohong lagi.

GMP’s Should Be Ashamed – Reader’s Experience

16/03/2009

Gerakan Mansuhkan PPSMI (GMP) had in its memorandum to the Government stated that Science and Mathematics and all other subjects were taught in the National Language since 1970. I think they are grossly misled by their own fantasy and they are just dreaming. History shows that those studying in the government schools way back in 1978 were still studying Mathematics and all Sciences in English. I took my MCE (in English) in 1978 and have my MCE certificate to prove my claims. How can they lie in their memorandum to the Government! Yet they claim to be sincere in championing the cause! They can’t even get their facts correct! We all can still remember well that in 1974, Bahasa Malaysia was first made compulsory in MCE. Many students Chinese, Malays and Indians whom had not done well in the national language failed MCE that year even though they have scored A s in all other subjects. Way back then nobody blames others people for their failure. Those who failed tried harder the following year. Everyone knows that it was done for nation building. On the contrary to the GMP’s claims that materials in Malay are plenty, reference in Malay was rare. I remembered distinctly that when I was in Universiti Sains Malaysia, back in 1987, doing my first degree in Science, I had tremendous problem trying to get reference material for Chemistry and Advance Calculus. That is one of the reasons why we were so very dependent on the lecture notes given by our lecturers, so much so that we don’t even mind being scolded by some lecturers for trying to borrow their transparencies, not because we are lazy but due to the fact that we cannot get reference materials in Malay and was too incompetent to translate the English reference materials. Looking back, we don’t know how we manage to scrape through those years … and the general public blames us that we have not mastered the learning skills to make our own notes etc etc … No one want to admit that there is insufficient reference materials to enable us to make notes! Kindly ask those who attended university in the eighties and nineties, as to why are they begging their seniors for their notes, I believe the respond you’ll get is that there is insufficient good reference materials. The GMP’s claim that there are lots of Science and Mathematics reference in Malay is also total rubbish. You can’t buy 3 good reference books on Complex Analysis in Malay back then. How can you write a thesis in Malay if there are insufficient reference materials and not to mention our incompetency in the English Language where most of the materials are written in? More often than not there are tremendous amount of misconceptions in translation! Once again we would like to appeal to Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad to kindly check his facts first before taking it to the streets. By simply claiming that there are lots of materials in Malay for Science and Mathematics is absolute rubbish. We would suggest that Dato’ Dr Hassan and his supporters pause and think about their next cause of action. It would be a better idea if they were to engage the Ministry of Education to find out more about Education instead of taking to the streets blindly. And for your information, the translation done by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka is also questionable. Ask the private sectors who have engage them …

GMP’s Questionable Motive – Reader’s View

15/03/2009

Gerakan Mansuhkan PPSMI (GMP) had appeal to the Government of Malaysia and its parliamentarians to abolish the policy of Teaching of Mathematics and Sciences in English (PPSMI). They claimed that it’s for the best for the hundreds of thousands of pupils in the national schools and also to avoid Bahasa Malaysia (The National Language) from claiming it’s place among the language for knowledge! In a blink of the eye, without any warning of giving sufficient time for the government to act on the memorandum, GMP took the issue to the streets. To most peace loving and law abiding Malaysians this approach is seen as wild, ill-mannered (“Kurang Ajar”). Their intension of sending the memorandum followed by the demonstration without giving ample time for the government to act puts a huge question mark in their intension! Are they truly putting the hundreds of thousands of pupils’ interests at heart? Even though the Minister of Education has through his press conference that very day mentioned that all their views will be taken into consideration and that the Cabinet Paper had been prepared pending the approval of the Cabinet, the GMP still took the issue to the streets causing tremendous inconvenience to another hundreds of thousands of Malaysians! By doing so they only convinced all Malaysians that they actually have a hidden agenda and is a puppet to some party or parties! If they are actually sincere in their cause, they should have gone through the proper channels instead of creating unrest and havoc in the streets like some uncivilised animals.

It’s a pity that Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad, having served many years in the Ministry of Education with so many acquaintances still working for the Ministry of Education cannot appreciate the government machinery and process in changing policies! How can he suddenly decide not to know that time is needed to formulate of get a new policy approved by the Cabinet! He must have known that a policy cannot be abolished in 2 weeks! Maybe he is already senile! He should have taken part in the round table discussions which was carried out by the Ministry of Education and not to organise riots that disturb public peace!

We sincerely hope that Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad will realise his mistake and be big enough of a man to take necessary corrective action for his unacceptable behaviour in the last few weeks. We hope that he will take the initiative to make amends and discuss HIS grievances with the top management of the Ministry of Education and NOT behave like the monkey he denied to be!

Reader’s View In Malay

14/03/2009

Gerakan Mansuhkan PPSMI (GMP) dalam memorandumnya memohon pertimbangan pihak kerajaan dan wakil rakyat di parlimen untuk memansuhkan dasar PPSMI, kononnya untuk membela nasib beratus ribu pelajar di sekolah kebangsaan serta mengelakkan Bahasa Melayu daripada termusnah sebagi bahasa ilmu. Dalam sekelip mata sahaja tanpa memberi masa kepada pihak kerajaan untuk bertindak, mereka bertindak liar dan kurang ajar dengan demonstrasi mereka. Apakah sebenarnya tujuan mereka berbuat demikian? Memandangkan tindakan mereka untuk terus mengganas walaupun Menteri Pelajaran memaklumkan bahawa Kementerian Pelajaran telah menyediakan Kertas Kabinet untuk kelulusan Kabinet. Ini jelas bahawa mereka ini (GMP) mempunyai agenda lain dan merupakan dalang kepada pihak tertentu. Sekiranya mereka ikhlas dalam niat mereka, mereka akan menggunakan saluran dan platfom yang betul untuk mencapai matlamat mereka dan bukan wujudkan kekecohan di jalanan seperti orang-orang yang tidak bertamaddun.
Sayang sekali, setelah berpuluh tahun berkhidmat dengan Kementerian Pelajaran dan masih mempunyai ramai kenalan di KPM, Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad yang fasih dan tahun selok belok jentera pentadbiran kerajaan, tiba-tiba berpura-pura tidak tahu bahawa untuk mengubah dasar berkaitan dengan pendidikan tidak boleh dilaksanakan dalam tempoh seminggu dua! Mungkin beliau sudah nyanyok! Beliau seharusnya mengambil bahagian dalam rundingan meja bulat yang dilaksanakan oleh KPM untuk menyuarakan hujah-hujah beliau dan bukannya bertindak sedemikian cara sehingga menggangu ketenteraman awam.
Kami amat berharap agar Dato’ Dr Hassan Ahmad akan sedar bahawa perangainya dalam beberapa minggu kebelakangan ini adalah tidak munasabah dan akan mengambil langkah untuk berbincang dengan pucuk pinpiman Kementerian Pelajaran.

Are These Guys Joking?

10/03/2009

The organizers of GMP wants a street demo yet in the press conference deny the responsibility when his followers gets out of control. How can he do this to the country? Being the leader of the group, he must have brief his people of what his intentions are. Otherwise he is just the puppet. Yet he claims that he is not a puppet, then he must have been their leader. Assuming he is neither the leader nor the puppet, then we should be very sad about the whole episode because our national hero, lead a riot in the middle of the National Capitol and he is ignorant of it.

The worst part of this whole fiasco is that he encourages people to join in the PEACEFUL demonstrations to give him support but he doesn’t want to be responsible for their actions! Its like the Hindraf asking people to gather in Batu Caves to show support for their cause then deny that they had anything to do with the riot they cause!

View the follow video Clip

The big question is how sincere is he to the Malaysian society? How can we entrust our children’s future to the ideal of such an irresponsible man? Will he later come back and tell us that he only requested for the change and its the government’s responsibility to ensure that our children will be competitive in the international arena when they are not. My dear “patriots” please remember in the international arena there is no special rights for Malaysians. Unlike in Malaysia, we don’t have the constitution to protect our interest there! There is also no special quota system where special places are allocated to us just because we are under privillage!

He can talk about Japan and Korea or even the Russians learning in their mother tongue, but pause and look where it had got them. Most Russian multi-nationals marketed their products through American firms… It is such countries that allow capatilist like America to flourish on the service sector (marketing)! Is that what we are aiming for? Moreover are we comparable to the Japanese or Koreans in terms of advancement of technology? So I would apeal to the learned one to think carefully since you claim that you have akal, maruah and not like the berok, are you making our race lose our maruah by doing this!

Respond from our readers

08/03/2009

I was educated together with the rest of my classmates in Taiping in a mission school from prmary one to sixth form some 30 to 40 years ago. During the scholling days, we were taught sciences & mathematics in the English AND the rest of the subjects except the English language in Bahasa Malaysia, We are schooled in the two most important languages besides Mandarin (regreted for not taking it as a subject privately). Subsequently, all classes junior to ours were in BM for all the subjects except English & Mandarin

If I am to be asked by the Government today, did that system benefit me? If they ask my classmates were they well schooled? I am very sure they would agree with me in affirmative! Just to share what benefit from that system.

I am able to use and converse well enough in English, ably to communicate with anyone from the Englsih speaking world. The gift of an English education also enables me to read and write sufficient to get things done. On the other hand, my grasp of the Bahasa Malaysia is also sufficient for me to speak to our Malays friends, communicate with any Government officers in this lovely language. As I am working with a non Government organisation, most the time the language of the communication is in Bahasa Malaysia. Can we imagine we live in Malaysia and yet unable to speak in the national language?

In summary, the present system is actually the same system we went through 4 decades ago. The conundrum today is we do not have the parameters to make the system ticks.
1. Teachers- we have committed teachers in both languages to educate us those days. Those days our teachers are more than capable to teach in both languages. We must bring up/ reeducate the present lot who rejects teaching Sceince/ Maths in English (though there are some exceptions)
2. Pupils & parents – It needs lots of hard work to master both language. Pupils and parents must come to reality in order for our children to be par excellence and competitive, we need both the languages
3. Bigotry/ Ethnocentrism – there are always plenty of bigoted people in the world and not only in Malaysia. They think their language and system is the best and there is no need to learn form others.
4. Government- please do not pander to the wishes of the minority who rejected the present system. You are the govenment & as an authority must press on to ensure we have a generation of citizen who are proud of the country because they are capable, self confidence without the unnecessary lack of inferior complex.

Finally to relate many incidences. I am 48 year old today and I work with many younger people. Often I came across Chinese, Malay and Indian Malaysians who are unable to speak properly in the simplest English thence unable to put across ideas even though I know these young people are bright, however handicapped by the lack of the skills. The govenment must press on and not left off because of political pressures. We should be unpopular today because we want to nurture a generation of Malaysians to excel. This is the sacrifice the government of the day has to take.

Parent in Kepala Batas

08/03/2009

As a parent who was not given an opportunity to study in English, I found myself struggling to cope with work demands due to my lack of english comprehension. Over the years and through many months of intensive English language courses, I have managed to bring my level of English to a standard that I can be proud of. But all this was done through my own effort. Now we have the government providing that effort for us and instead of grabbing that opportunity, some of those who claim to represent the Malay community are saying, “No thanks, we would really rather live under our coconut shell.” This has nothing to do with upholding the status national language of defending the snactity of the Malay language. It is pure ignorance and insecurity coupled with the usual political opportunism. PPSMI was never meant to make literature masters of us. It was merely meant to give us a good grounding in the areas of technical education. At the same time, PPSMI was never meant to replace Bahasa Malaysia as the main lingua franca or the main medium of education. It was never meant to do the above and indeed, it has not done the above. What it has done is given our students, from a very young age, a new sense of confidence when using the international language of communication and it given them a good basic grounding from which they can and they should , continue to improve their mastery of a major second language, apart from Bahasa Malaysia. For all the good that PPSMI has done for our students, we now have this group of exceedingly narrow minded so-called defenders of the Malay language telling us the PPSMI is about to destroy the very nature of our race and language. If that is how weak these people are, and more so, if that is how weak they think the Malays are, then I say to them, “You do not speak for me nor my children.” For I know I am way stronger than you give me credit for. English has never made me less Malay. It has made me a better Malay, a Malay who can walk tall in and outside Malaysia.


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