EDUCATION: Respect right to learn in English

Wednesday, October 31, 2012, 12:4 PM
Email Print 31 October 2012 | last updated at 07:23AM

By Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim | letters@nstp.com.my 0 comments

WE refer to “Schools have books in English” (NST, Oct 26 ).
The response by the Education Ministry (MoE) on the problem of buying science and mathematics textbooks in English indicates that it has misunderstood the intent of the letter and is unaware of the situation on the ground.
With reference to the circular dated Nov 4 last year, the decision to delay the abolition of the policy of teaching and learning science and mathematics in English in schools has been met with little support from the MoE, to ensure it continues until 2021.
Most critical is the absence of any instruction from the MoE to the publishers to print science and mathematics textbooks in English. Therefore, publishers’ stocks are selling out quickly and parents are frantically trying to source these few remaining books, the last of which were printed in 2009. Calls to several bookstores have confirmed this.
While it is true that schools are supposed to and do supply the textbooks in Bahasa Malaysia (BM) and English, it implies that if there is no such instruction to print English books, then these same books will be re-supplied to the students until 2021. Imagine the state of these books by then.
Many obstacles continue to be placed to ensure that students do not exercise their right to opt for English for reasons unknown.
Many schools offer only BM textbooks, when they should do so in both languages; examination questions from the education departments that are sent to schools remain in BM where it is up to the initiative of the school to translate them into English, yet most schools do not; in some schools, principals ignore pleas by students, parents and teachers to continue in English while teachers teach in BM, oblivious to the rights and wishes of the students.
Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim, Chairman books in English,Parent Action Group for Education Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur

Read more: EDUCATION: Respect right to learn in English – Letters to the Editor – New Straits Times http://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters-to-the-editor/education-respect-right-to-learn-in-english-1.164489?cache=03D163D03edding-pred-1.1176%2F%3FpFpentwage63Dp%3A%2Fhe3D03Dn63Frea-rti3D19.3D163D03edding-pred-1.1176%2F%3FpFpentwage63Dp%3A%2Fhe3D03Dn63Frea-rti3D19.111w5ii%2Fed-1.1176%2F%2F2.2525%2F2.2525%2F1.33120%2F7.1838#ixzz2AqUgBYnG

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