2012, Arkib Berita, Pembangunan Sekolah

Union welcomes Education Ministry’s promise to build more dorms in rural schools

Posted on July 4, 2012, Wednesday


KUCHING: Sarawak Bumiputera Teacher’s Union (KGBS) welcomes the Ministry of Education’s announcement to build more dormitory facilities in rural schools in East Malaysia.

“We hope that the construction can be implemented immediately for the welfare of Sarawakian schoolchildren in rural areas,” said the union’s president Ahmad Malie, in an SMS to the press yesterday.

He was responding to a statement by Deputy Education Minister Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi who said that the Ministry of Education would build more dormitory facilities in rural schools in Sabah and Sarawak to overcome the problems of student dropouts and truancy.

Ahmad also expressed the union’s gratitude to the Deputy Education Minister for his timely announcement as KGBS has brought up this issue with the ministry before.

He also said the the union hopes that the ministry would pay serious attention in its effort to improve education in rural areas.

“In addtion, KGBS hopes that the construction of dormitory facilities will be put forward simultaneously with the appropriate appointments to further smoothen its implementation.

“For example, there must be a hostel supervisor and also a student affairs assistant to ensure the safety and welfare of students at the hostel,” he said.

Yesterday, The Borneo Post reported Dr Puad as saying that the long distance of schools from villages were among the deterents for students reporting for class.

However, Dr Puad did not elaborate on the exact numbers of dropouts and truancy cases in Sarawak.

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2012/07/04/union-welcomes-education-ministrys-promise-to-build-more-dorms-in-rural-schools/#ixzz1zcAo47ny

2012, Arkib Berita, Masalah Guru, Masalah Pelajar, Pembangunan Sekolah

‘Some schools covering up drug-related problems’

Posted on July 4, 2012, Wednesday

by Philip Kiew, reporters@theborneopost.com.

Supt Mohd Bukhori Saffai

LIMBANG: Some secondary schools here have apparently been trying to cover-up the drug-related disciplinary problems of students from the police.

Limbang OCPD Superintendent Mohd Bukhori Saffai revealed that some school authorities seemed unwilling to cooperate with them.

“I am disappointed with the actions of certain quarters, who do not like the presence of police in the schools, are unwilling to cooperate and trying to cover-up their disciplinary problems,” he told a press conference.

He said two youths, one aged 14, were detained on Sunday after their urine tested positive for syabu.

They were arrested after being observed by the police as acting suspiciously.

“Following the arrests and investigation, we have identified several students aged between 14 and 16 from a secondary school in the district, who are believed to be involved in drug abuse,” he revealed.

He warned that more students would be identified as the police have collected strong evidence to connect them to drug abuse offences.

The police chief warned that concealing disciplinary problems contradicts the Ministry of Education’s order and school heads could face disciplinary action.

“We will not compromise on any criminal activities, including drug abuse involving students, and efforts would be continued to overcome such problems.” He added that such disciplinary problems are cancerous phenomena that must be stopped from spreading.

Meanwhile, police arrested a 29-year-old male suspect last week at the Limbang Customs Department wharf for possession of drugs, an offence under Section 39A (1) of the Dangerous Drugs Act (DDA) 1952.

A search led to the recovery of 6.54 grams of syabu crystals, which are believed to be for the suspect’s own use.

“The investigation is underway and the suspect has been released on police bail,” added Mohd Bukhori.

Read more: http://www.theborneopost.com/2012/07/04/some-schools-covering-up-drug-related-problems/#ixzz1zc9MMKjK

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Masalah Guru, Pembangunan Sekolah, Rencana, Surat

TEACHING PROFESSION: What good teachers are made of

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

By Dr Dzulkiflee Abdullah, Bau, Sarawak 0 comments

I REFER to “A good salary will help” by Marisa Demori and “Experience and passion matter more” by R. Murali Rajaratenam (NST, June 24).

.A great teacher is someone who can inspire her charges and bring passion to the job.

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I agree with both on some things about good teachers. However, I do not agree with Murali’s concluding statement that it is “an already deflated profession”.

What makes good teachers? There are many answers to this question, including ideas based on our experience. Below are a few thoughts on what I think are characteristics of good teachers.

ABILITY to connect with students: Teachers who connect with their students are good teachers. They must light up the classroom the moment they enter it. Their teaching must fit students’ aptitude. Striving to maintain students’ interest in subjects is important.

ABILITY to communicate well: for teachers to succeed and be effective, they must possess good communication skills.

Good teachers must communicate effectively with students.

They are willing to explore innovative ways to make complicated ideas understandable, and fit new ideas into contexts that are understandable to students.

Good teachers can take a subject and make it crystal clear to students.

PASSION for teaching: no one can stay for long in a job if they do not have a passion for it.

The passion for teaching is important to become good teachers. This factor differentiates average teachers from great teachers. Good teachers are people who teach because they have a passion for it.

Teachers with passion give their heads and hearts to teaching. They care about the whats, the hows and the whys of teaching.

They believe they can make a difference to students.

These teachers are committed to working with their colleagues. For these teachers, teaching is a creative and adventurous profession.

HAVE a sense of purpose: as human beings, good teachers should behave ethically.

Teachers should know what their students expect and make plans to meet their expectations. If teachers want to prepare their students to excel in their studies, their teaching should be well prepared and well presented.

ENJOY their work and their students: good teachers must enjoy their work and their students. If teachers enjoy their work, students are motivated, energised and become creative.

REFLECTIVE: being good teachers, they should think about and reflect on their classes, their lessons, their students, their methods and their teaching materials. Being reflective teachers means they compare and contrast, make parallels, and distinctions, review, remove, rethink and restore. This also includes the ability to be self-critical.

Failing to reflect on what happens after each lesson disconnects teachers from the teaching and learning process, and it is impossible to create connectivity if they have disconnected themselves.

GOOD role model: if teachers want their students to excel, the teachers should excel first.

Teachers are role models for students, so they must be at their best in front of children.

If they want to impart values to students, they must have the same values. When students appreciate their teachers as people who uphold high standards and ethics, it is easier for students to take their work seriously.

So, students learn through inspiration, rather than by enforcement and obedience.

CREATIVE and innovative: creativity is another quality of good teachers. With many changes in the syllabus and school environment, teachers should include interesting activities, techniques, methods and exercises to make their lessons fun.

Creative lessons develop interest in students about teaching and learning.

The important point in teaching is whether students retain what teachers taught.

If their teaching is interesting, they will have a class full of curious eyes and ears, absorbing everything they deliver. Students will then learn out of impulsion, not out of compulsion.

Creative and innovative teaching involves passion, attention and positive attitude towards the profession.

PATIENCE: some say teachers who are patient with their students are deemed the best.

Patience is needed when teachers teach the same students, who vary in their ability to understand concepts.

It is important to be patient with such students. Undoubtedly, any disturbance in classrooms may affect teachers’ temperaments, but being patient in these situations helps the process of teaching.

Good teachers explain each and every point to students.

UNDERSTANDING: teachers should be understanding. This is another trait of good teachers. Students have problems that need to be understood and steps devised to overcome them.

Teachers should not prejudge students, as this will not bring changes in them. Teaching methods should be flexible for different situations.

Teachers must understand students’ viewpoints as this helps in their teaching.

DISCOVERS and encourages: good teachers discover talents of their students.

Students are unique and none of them is weak. Each has a talent waiting to be discovered. In classes, students grasp facts at different speeds.

Thus, some may lag behind in understanding, which just means that they need attention. Teachers must also monitor students’ academic development and personal growth.

Some may not know there is a best orator, best singer or best footballer in a class.

Therefore, the teachers’ challenge is to transform average students into clever ones.

Every honest appreciation and encouragement students receive will change dull brains to intelligent heads.

HUMILITY: this is rarely seen in teachers and it is an important quality of good teachers.

Teachers who claim to know it all will impart knowledge to students but they may not earn the respect or affection of their students. Students may be fed up with such teachers.

The traits of good teachers will contribute to good teaching. Good teaching involves values, purpose, attitude to learning, and teachers’ commitment to providing the best to students every day.

Good teaching encompasses technique, content and presentation.

However, sometimes, we come across someone with tremendous knowledge and qualification but who fails to communicate this efficiently, which will lead to students becoming bored and frustrated.

Also, good teachers always motivate students, no matter how tough the situation is, or how weak the students are.

Good teachers are those who crack jokes in class, but are serious when teaching.

Good teachers can can turn a dull subject into an exciting one. Good teachers are leaders, but they are also friends. Good teachers are those who are always students at heart.

Without these qualities, good teaching will not exist. Teachers need to be committed to five principles: committed to the school, committed to the profession, committed to the work group or colleagues, committed to work and committed to students.

This is not indulgence; it is a professional necessity.

Read more: TEACHING PROFESSION: What good teachers are made of – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/teaching-profession-what-good-teachers-are-made-of-1.101764#ixzz1zc7h4Vl0

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Pembangunan Sekolah, Rencana, Surat

SCHOOL SAFETY: Consider input from public, too

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

By TAN SRI LEE LAM THYE 0 comments

THE Education Ministry stated recently (NST, June 16) that it would standardise the security at schools registered with it to provide a safer environment for students, following recent reports of student safety under threat.
All government-aided schools would have to manage six standard safety-related measures in the next few months, says deputy director-general Sufaat Tumin, including safety during school activities, school security guards, school infrastructure, social ills, security during crises and disasters and safety in the face of threats.

According Sufaat, schools must pass an evaluation to be labelled as “safe”. Schools that can afford closed-circuit television systems will be encouraged to do so with the support of parent-teacher associations and security companies.
The job scope of school guards will also be extended to become traffic wardens.

The proposed measures to beef up security in all schools is a step in the right direction.

It is a subject of vital importance as security in schools and safety for all students must never be compromised under whatever circumstances.

I applaud the various security measures that are being discussed to beef up school security. The ministry should also consider other useful input from the public for the same purpose.

Speaking about safety, a significant problem today is related to school infrastructure, building and facilities.

Safety audits are recommended for all schools to determine the safety aspects of all parts of the school buildings.

Not so long ago, it was reported that from a physical audit on 9,600 schools nationwide, it was found that some 576 schools needed upgrading and RM500 million had to be set aside for the exercise.

Here lies the importance of bringing occupational safety and health awareness to all schools and making it a safety issue.

National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH)

Read more: SCHOOL SAFETY: Consider input from public, too – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/school-safety-consider-input-from-public-too-1.101753#ixzz1zc56Lro9

2012, Arkib Berita, Bahasa, Forum, Masalah Guru, Masalah Pelajar, Pembangunan Sekolah, Rencana, Subjek, Surat

TEACHERS: Blanket assessment an insult

Wednesday, July 04, 2012,

By Lim Bee Hoon, Batu Pahat, Johor 0 comments

I REFER to the online English proficiency test that teachers have to take. I have but 18 months to retirement. It isn’t that I am afraid I will fail when I do the test online. It just adds insult to my age and experience as an English teacher for 37 years to be lumped together with the others to take the test in order to be assessed online. Now, whose idea was it in the first place?
I would understand if the incompetent and not proficient ones were identified to take the test, but no, all must take it as instructed.
So what happens to my distinction in English at Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) level in 1971? Is it not credit worthy or have I to do it because the authorities have discovered recently that there are too many English teachers who are not up to the mark, hence the decision to have a blanket assessment.
I speak English, breathe English and even dream in English. I speak proficient English, even better than today’s graduates and can detect a grammar error the minute it’s spoken or written. I believe there are many holding positions of authority who can’t speak better English than I; and when they speak, I only hear a smattering of English and that, to them, is English.
I may be bold to defy orders but as an educator, I feel it’s high time I voiced out my thoughts for all to hear as we feel literally humiliated by the very system of which we are a part in the name of education.
If I am tested on impromptu public-speaking, I think I would be able to say anything offhand, as I do at my meetings and school assemblies as a school head, in order to steer the school to English proficiency.
Can someone address our grievances or do we have to keep quiet and swallow our pride and allow ourselves to be trampled over and over again?

Read more: TEACHERS: Blanket assessment an insult – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/teachers-blanket-assessment-an-insult-1.102324#ixzz1zc224hiD

2012, Arkib Berita, Bahasa, IPT, Pembangunan Sekolah, Rencana, Subjek, Surat

ENGLISH: Students must show initiative

Email Print 04 Julai 2012 | last updated at 08:24am

By Laila Aidilia Fitri, Petaling Jaya, Selangor 0 comments

I REFER to the report “Undergrads to boost their English skills “(NST, June 18), which is a good plan for advancing our students’ competency in English.
Students should know the importance of English in the real world. Although we already have the Malaysian University English Test (MUET), it has had little or no impact. Students can get a Band 2 or 3 and still be able to enter university.
Higher Education director-general Professor Datuk Dr Rujhan Mustafa has said university faculties could also conduct “English For Specific Discipline” subjects, which is part of the new plan to enhance students’ understanding of their field of study.
Initiatives such as this will give students the confidence to communicate in English. It is also good for the image and quality of public universities.
However, student participation is important in making this programme successful. They must start using English as a medium of communication in class and among friends.

Read more: ENGLISH: Students must show initiative – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/english-students-must-show-initiative-1.102320#ixzz1zc159j2M

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Pembangunan Sekolah, Surat

SCHOOLS: Toilets in sorry state

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

By Azaman Abu Bakar, Kuala Lumpur 0 comments

MY granddaughter, who is in Year One in a school in Taman Tun Dr Ismail, says she does not use the school toilet, but instead tahan (endures) until she returns home.
She says the school toilets are too dirty and smelly.
The question is, are there standards or enough cleaners for such things?
If there are not enough cleaners, I’m sure the parent-teacher association could get the necessary funds to hire more cleaners who could be on standby throughout school hours.

Read more: SCHOOLS: Toilets in sorry state – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/schools-toilets-in-sorry-state-1.102326#ixzz1zc0AV7HQ