2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Pelajar, Pembangunan Sekolah, Pendidikan Khas, Program, Rencana, Surat

Especially for the senses

Sunday November 11, 2012

http://thestar.com.my/education/story.asp?file=/2012/11/11/education/12278055&sec=education

 

Sharing session: Goh (left) and Tengku Syed Badarudin (next to her) with a student at the launch.Sharing session: Goh (left) and Tengku Syed Badarudin (next to her) with a student at the launch.

SOME children dislike attending school but for special needs children, going to school is often an uphill battle.

The experience is not only frustrating for the pupils themselves but also the teachers as they need proper tools to mentor and support them based on their individual needs.

For the 25 special needs pupils of SK Taman Bukit Subang, Shah Alam, the problem has been solved.

The third F&N Sensory Integration Room has been set up at their school to cater for their needs and that of another 25 pupils from SK Jalan U3 which is just across the road.

F&N Beverages Marketing Sdn Bhd corporate affairs manager Cariessa Goh believes that every child deserves the right to obtain quality education.

“It is the basic foundation that helps to nurture and grow our young minds so they in turn can impact our society positively and contribute to the nation’s development.

“Based on four major evaluation benchmarks, the 90 pupils from our first two centres have shown an average improvement of close to 65% after six months of being exposed to the room,” said Goh, adding that the encouraging results were the impetus to continuing their efforts.

The room is filled with equipment such as a platform swing, protective mats, a resistance tunnel, a trampoline and a rope wall ladder.

Each tool plays its distinctive purpose in stimulating sensory integration such as increasing spatial awareness, concentration, relaxation and alertness while stimulating sensorial experiences such as sight and sound to help the brain organise and interpret information.

The room was recently launched by Fraser & Neave Holdings Bhd chairman Tengku Syed Badarudin Jamalullail and Selangor Education Department Special Education sector head Abd Latif A. Aziz.

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2012, Arkib Berita, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Pelajar, Pembangunan Sekolah, Pendidikan Khas, Program

Plan for schools in the interior

Sunday November 11, 2012

http://thestar.com.my/education/story.asp?file=/2012/11/11/education/12278153&sec=education

 

The Education Ministry is drawing up an Interior Education Transformation Plan to upgrade the standard of education and reduce the gap between urban and interior schools.

Deputy Minister Dr Mohd Puad Zarkashi (pic) said a special committee in the ministry had conducted extensive research on the subject which is expected to be announced soon.

“The main focus of the transformation plan is to ensure balanced education between the interior and urban areas, he said after opening the SMK Telaga school building in Pitas, Sabah recently.

The plan will ensure that every interior school must be led by competent principals and headmasters who in turn must ensure that their respective schools have adequate facilities and Internet access.

Dr Mohd Puad said the plan also included building new accommodation for teaching staff and resolving the electricity and water supply problems.

About 1,000 schools in Sabah and Sarawak are categorised as interior schools and lack basic facilities.

The government, he added, had spent RM701 million to supply electricity to all schools in Sabah which has used hybrid solar energy since 2008.

At another event in Kajang, Selangor, Dr Mohd Puad said that ministry aimed to expand the Special Education Integration programme at regular schools to achieve a special needs student target of 30% by 2015.

He said that 1,971 regular schools had implemented the inclusive education programme which involved 53,024 students who were visually-impaired, hearing impaired and slow learners.

“We lag far behind in numbers (currently 7.5%) as compared to developed countries,” he said after presenting the National 1Malaysia Special Education Sports, Co-curriculum and Arts Awards 2011 to 139 students with special needs from around the country. — Bernama

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Pelajar, Rencana, Surat

‘Being different’ can make you fair game

Thursday November 8, 2012

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/11/8/focus/12278203&sec=focus

Musings
By Marina Mahathir

Our schools are no longer a safe space for our children because adults have decreed that certain children may be subject to discrimination.

RECENTLY, a 14-year-old boy was set upon by two schoolboys at a bus stop and beaten so badly that he died. His crime? He “walked funny”.

I read this story about this incident in Malacca and my heart bled for every mother involved in this case.

I cried for the mother who lost her only son, and I also cried for the other mothers forced to face the fact that their sons had blood on their hands. All of them must be wondering the same thing: Why?

I can posit a theory why. In our country today, we now have an atmosphere where we do not tolerate anyone different.

Our schools have no longer become a safe space for our children because adults have decreed that certain children may be subject to discrimination.

Indeed, the very people who should be there to protect our children have even put up “guidelines” on which children to pick on. In particular, those boys who don’t seem “boy” enough and those girls who don’t seem “girl” enough.

The result is that our children, taking the cue from adults, thus feel they can pick on any of their schoolmates who fit these “descriptions”, as amorphous as they may be, with impunity.

They know full well that if they did anything to those children, then adults will not only not punish them, they may even praise and reward them.

The lack of outrage that this murder has happened is telling. Are we saying that any boy who “walks funny” is fair game? What other quirk may attract violence?

Bullying has really become an epidemic in our schools. Every week or so, we see reports of all sorts of incidents of bullying, where some schoolchildren pick on others, usually those who are defenceless and weak. Or children who become so scared to go to school that they become very stressed out, even sometimes to the point of suicide.

Yet so little is being done to stop these incidents. We don’t even seem interested to know why they happen.

Are our schools over-crowded? Do our kids think of schools as safe spaces or as battlefields that they have to negotiate every day? How does any child learn anything if they are scared of school?

Bullying does not happen in a vacuum. Children learn from adults. If they see adults using bullying as a way of exercising power, then that is exactly the type of behaviour they will emulate.

There is no shortage of bully power in the adult world around them, so why should we be surprised that children become bullies?

A friend I know told the story of how he was bullied at school just because he had slit eyes and was mistaken for another race. Where would children get the idea that this is acceptable?

Bullying is also a form of self-protection. If a child perceives that certain physical traits or behaviours are likely to attract the attention of bullies, what better way to deflect attention and at the same time protect himself or herself than by becoming a bully as well?

Has the Education Ministry come up with any guidelines on the prevention of bullying in school?

It must start with defining what bullying is and making it clear that all forms of bullying, whether physical, verbal or emotional, is unacceptable. And that it is not to be tolerated, whether it is by students or teachers.

But then adults often face bullying in the workplace, which sometimes comes in the form of sexual harassment, yet we still do not have a law against it.

So how can we hope to deal with it in schools when we won’t deal with it in adulthood? I think it is high time the most impacted people fought back. That’s schoolchildren and mothers. School­children should form anti-bullying clubs in schools to find ways to deal with the issue, both to prevent it and to protect one another.

Instead of always having teachers advise them what to do, they should come up with the solutions themselves because only they know what an unsafe school atmosphere feels like. There are NGOs that can facilitate this.

Mothers should start a new movement called something like Mothers Against Bullying.

We love our children and don’t want them to suffer in school, so we need to take action. We need to show our children that their safety and well-being at school is our concern, not just their grades.

Mothers have to demand this before more of our children are hurt or killed.

But the best prevention really is a social environment that is understanding, tolerant and respectful of differences. Do we have that these days?

2012, Arkib Berita, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Pembangunan Sekolah, Program, Program Susu Sekolah, Rencana

Pastikan Susu 1Malaysia sampai ke pedalaman

6 November 2012, Selasa

Mohd. Afizi Mohd. Ross (berdiri tengah) bersama Penyelia Hal Ehwal Murid Pejabat Pendidikan Daerah Klang, Mohd. Tukipon Zahlan (kiri) dan Guru Besar SJK (C) Keng Chee Pulau Ketam, Soh Swee Koon (kanan) bersama murid-murid sekolah tersebut menunjukkan susu Dutch Lady dalam lawatan pengagihan ke sekolah Program Susu 1Malaysia di SJK (C) Keng Chee Pulau Ketam, Klang, Selangor, semalam.

PELABUHAN KLANG 5 Nov. – Jarak dan kepayahan untuk berinteraksi dengan dunia luar bukan alasan untuk menghalang masyarakat daripada menerima setiap bantuan daripada kerajaan.

Perkara tersebut termasuk usaha kerajaan untuk memastikan pelaksanaan penghantaran bekalan Program Susu 1Malaysia (PS1M) ke sekolah-sekolah di kawasan luar bandar dan juga ke kawasan pulau dilakukan dengan sebaik mungkin.

Ini terbukti apabila pengamal media dibawa ke Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Cina (SJKC) Keng Chee di Pulau Ketam di sini untuk melihat sendiri bagaimana bantuan tersebut diagihkan kepada murid-murid di pulau tersebut.

Meskipun perjalanan kira-kira 45 minit dari jeti Pulau Ketam ke sekolah berkenaan tidak dianggap mengambil masa yang lama, usaha para petugas untuk menghantar bekalan susu tersebut tetap berhadapan risiko kerana pelbagai kemungkinan boleh berlaku ketika meredah lautan.

Pengurus Hal Ehwal Korporat Dutch Lady Malaysia, Mohd. Afizi Mohd. Ross berkata, pihaknya berusaha sedaya upaya untuk menghantar stok PS1M ke setiap sekolah termasuk sekolah di luar bandar seperti SJKC Keng Chee.

Beliau berkata, jarak dan masa bukan penghalang kepada Dutch Lady Malaysia yang kini merupakan salah satu daripada empat pembekal utama PS1M di seluruh negara.

“Tiada masalah bagi kami untuk memastikan bekalan sentiasa mencukupi, melalui PS1M murid-murid dibekalkan dua kotak susu dalam tempoh seminggu sepanjang musim persekolahan.

“Di bawah program ini, kami telah mengedarkan kira-kira 12.5 juta kotak susu kepada 1,400 buah sekolah membabitkan 297,000 orang murid di kawasan Kuala Lumpur, Selangor, Pulau Pinang dan Melaka,” katanya kepada pemberita selepas mengagihkan bekalan PS1M ke SJKC Keng Chee di sini hari ini.

Selain menghantar bekalan PS1M, Dutch Lady Malaysia turut menjalankan tanggungjawab sosial korporat (CSR) dengan mengadakan ceramah pendidikan nutrisi pemakanan kepada 106 murid di sekolah berkenaan.

Menurut Mohd. Afizi, antara tujuan utama pelaksanaan PS1M adalah untuk melahirkan generasi baru yang lebih kuat, tegap dan cergas.

Katanya, bekalan susu ke setiap sekolah terutamanya melibatkan produk keluaran Dutch Lady Malaysia yang diperkenalkan sejak dua tahun lalu dijamin selamat oleh kerajaan dan terbukti tidak mendatangkan kemudaratan kepada kesihatan murid-murid.

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Guru, Masalah Pelajar, Pembangunan Sekolah, Pendidikan Awal, Rencana, Surat

Preschool paradigm

02 November 2012 | last updated at 11:20PM

Standard assessment will improve every facet of early education

DECEMBER is fast approaching; by which time, 20,000 trained early education teachers would have entered the job market. Holding diplomas in early education, they will bring a new approach to the nurturing of young minds. This should be a boon to an educational level thought, thus far, to be more play than learn and to ensure good physical care. In the past, school activities such as reading and writing at this stage was viewed more as a bonus than a need. Today, that perception is obsolete and intellectually children should be stimulated as early as is practicable. Towards this end, this educational sector will be restructured accordingly to secure the quality looked for.

Teachers are, of course, the main target if preschool education is to be improved. Those already in the system and those aspiring to join what is an admirable calling will be given a leg up by the government. They can now apply for financial assistance from the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) to pursue relevant courses. Increasing the intellectual input alone will not, however, quite achieve the desired objective. What the government proposes to do, as announced by the deputy prime minister, is to better every facet of early education through a standard assessment by the Education Ministry. The aim is to provide a system of accreditation — not a means of persecution — so that preschoolers receive the kind of quality education that “encourages mental and holistic development”.

One aspect that was discussed through a lab exercise was the needs of disabled children so that the findings could be included in the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 preliminary report. In this respect, caregivers and teachers are important in identifying the cases to enable early intervention. Consequently, improving the training curriculum of teachers becomes an imperative. While disabled children require special attention, all children in their care need early scrutiny, for these are the most formative years of a human being. It will shape their perceptions towards school and education, and in the long run, determine the future quality of Malaysia’s human capital. It is, therefore, essential that teachers are competent to assess whether their charges have had a typical or an atypical development from aspects such as cognitive, social and emotional, language, play and perceptual. Building and expanding the skills of teachers is a necessary follow-up to the paradigm shift in early education that is being officially put in motion. And, one academic discipline that will serve to enhance a preschool teacher’s skill would be child psychology, given the desire for early intervention. After all, handicaps come obvious and hidden.

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Pelajar, Rencana, Surat

STUDENT INDISCIPLINE: Act to curb violence in and outside schools

01 November 2012 | last updated at 07:32AM

By Samuel Yesuiah, Seremban, Negri Sembilan | letters@nstp.com.my 0 comments

CASES of aggression and violence among students within and outside schools should be checked and curbed by the authorities. Student brawls are common in secondary schools and most occur in the vicinity of the schools. However, some fight and brawl outside the school.

.A fight between three Form Four students at the Pulau Sebang a bus terminal resulted in the death K. Saravannan, 14

1 / 1

The fight between three 14-year-old students which led to the death of a student in the Pulau Sebang bus terminal in Tampin shows the extreme of school violence.

As reported in “Outrage over couldn’t care less attitude” (NST, Oct 27), over 30 people, including Form Four and Form Five students, watched a fight between three students for over 30 minutes at the bus terminal complex. The crowd did not intervene nor did any of them call the police. As a result, a young boy’s life was taken due to the brute force inflicted by the other students in the deadly assault.

The report has resulted in public outrage over the “couldn’t care less” attitude of the crowd watching the fight. The public’s apathetic ways must change. More importantly, violence and aggression among students need to be reviewed and checked by school authorities.

Fights and brawls involving students should be handled and monitored by the police. There are many children in schools who have violent and aggressive tendencies. These are the misfits who do not have academic inclinations. They are a nuisance in school and disruptive in class.

In April, an argument between two 14-year-old students in school resulted in a fight which led to one of them being paralysed from the waist down. Fights and brawls in schools should be checked and student violence should be eradicated. Students should not be allowed to even touch their fellow students. Even a friendly tap or a slap on the back can result in a fight.

In football, a player who reacts violently to other players is immediately shown the red card and told to leave the field. A head butt or even pushing the player is deemed a serious offence on the field.

Perhaps we need to be stricter in enforcing an anti-violence code among students. Students can easily lose their temper and it can result in devastating consequences. Severe punishment should be meted out to those who slap, hit, punch or kick another student for whatever reason, even if they have been provoked.

Students should report to teachers whenever they are provoked or bullied. Many innocent boys fall victims to bullies who terrorise their lives. They make school a living hell for the good students. A culture of non-violence should be advocated in schools.

The Education Ministry has to set up strict guidelines for schools on ways to handle disciplinary problems such as fighting and bullying. Advice, counselling and warnings are the standard procedures to deal with student violence. Repeat and aggressive offenders should be expelled from the school.

The two boys involved in the fight should be expelled and sent to the Henry Gurney School for corrective behaviour conditioning.

Perpetrators of violence should be removed from normal schools and sent to special schools for rehabilitation. If this is not done, these bullies and violent students will grow up to be juvenile delinquents, vandals and road bullies and end up as thugs with criminal tendencies.

Parents of bullies should be held responsible and made accountable for the actions of their children. Parents should be summoned to the school and informed of their children’s behaviour. Proper enforcement is needed and corporal punishment should be meted to violent students.

Hopefully, teachers, disciplinarians and parents will play their roles as guardians and look after children from bullies and hoodlums in schools. Many children will not tell their teachers or parents if they are being bullied or harassed by fellow students. The onus is on the parents and teachers to check and supervise the children closely in schools.

2012, Arkib Berita, Forum, Keselamatan Pelajar/Kesihatan, Masalah Pelajar, Rencana, Surat

Bullying, a wake up call

Wednesday October 31, 2012

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/10/31/focus/12249607&sec=focus

THE senseless beating and death of 14-year-old K. Saravanan at the hands of bullies is a wake-up call for all Malay-sians.

Where is the so called “caring-Malaysian” among the crowd that stood and watched as Saravanan was beaten to death?

Why didn’t anybody try to save Saravanan?

Have we become a society in which each fends for his own and not for the neighbour?

This issue of bullying has been raised many times before and we have become so numb and apathetic that it is just a matter of days before this too fades from our memory.

Unless we act now, this incident will repeat, in another place, to another boy, maybe even a child you know.

Surely the police and justice system is strong enough to punish crime doers or have we lost faith that the system can bring justice to the weak and protect the one who steps forward to help?

We need to ask ourselves why we do not feel anything more than a passing empathy for this child.

Is it because we fear to step forward to help a victim due to the possibility of revenge by gangs? Where does fear end and justice begin?

There are countless cases of bullying in schools that have got out of hand and these same boys grow up to be crime doers.

I call on the police to work with the education system to eradicate bullying in schools as this is a grassroots level of crime in society today.

We need to consider more faith education and religious classes for all children in school.

No amount of compensation can alleviate the anguish of the loss of the only child of N. Malar. Our heart truly goes out to her.

Let us each make an effort to console her with the promise that her child did not die in vain.

Each of us must awaken our conscience to act against this evil in our society and to ensure that no child will need to die this way in our country.

We didn’t Save Saravanan but we can create a society that will “Stop the Bullying and Save Saravanan’s Memory.”

I have learnt that heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.

REV ANDREW MANICKAM
Cheras, Selangor

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