Why the bad English?
New Straits Times 20293165.html
Sunday, Aug 07, 2011
By Rizalman Hammim
LABIS – Are teachers incompetent, or school books unsuitable?
The Education Ministry will look at these factors to determine why students continue to have a poor grasp of the English language.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who is also education minister, said the ministry would review the curriculum with regard to the teaching of English as well as identify the reasons behind students’ poor command of the language.
Muhyiddin said even after learning the language for 13 years at primary, secondary and matriculation levels, some students still could not master English.
“I have no answers for this problem. I will ask the (Education) director-general to review the English curriculum to find out the reasons behind the problem.
“Is it because the teachers are not competent or there are not enough teachers, or because the books are not suitable?We can’t ignore this anymore.” He said this during his visit to SMK Maokil here yesterday.
Present were Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Ahmad Maslan, Bukit Serampang assemblyman Tahir Taat and school principal Noor Hashimah Hassan.
He said many parents were worried when the ministry changed its policy from the Teaching of Mathematics and Science in English (PPSMI) to the Upholding the Malay Language, Strengthening Command of English (MBMMBI) policy.
“They were concerned that English would be ignored and considered as unimportant.
“This is a wrong assumption.
As the education minister, I have always stressed the importance of mastering English as a second language as it is a language for international trade.” He said students must be given the opportunity and exposure to speak and understand both languages.
During the visit, Muhyiddin presented awards to the school’s top Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia students of last year.
Saturday, November 5, 2011
Why The Bad English?
Why is he so adamant to get rid of English in PPSMI in spite of overwhelming demand from the people, particularly parents, to continue teaching the subjects in English.
Should one man be allowed to dictate his will on the whole nation and the future generations?
Muhyiddin finally revealed that the Prime Minister is in the know and has given his assent to make the change.
If Najib and his cabinet think they could win the hearts of the people, particularly the Malays, by this politically motivated decision, they are making a big mistake.Some lazy educationists must have fed them wrong information.
Former Prime Minister Tun Mahathir Mohammad had asked Najib to overrule Muhyiddin and put the issue to a referendum.
The claim that the standard of education has gone down because of using English as a medium in Maths and Science does not make sense and is hard to believe.The government should publish data to convince the people that what it claimed is true.
If the standard has gone down it is the fault of the government, not the students or teachers.If you don't provide them with proper tools how can you expect them to do well? Bad teachers make bad students.
"Seperti tikus memperbaiki labu" Why after 13 years of learning English students still can't master the language? Are Malaysians that stupid? As they say "you pay peanuts you get monkeys" The answer is because you employed incompetent teachers who themselves are poor in English.
The whole education system is screwed up and should be revamped.English should be made compulsory subject at least two years before leaving primary level if the government is serious to make Malaysians proficient in the language.
If our coloniser can do it why can't this government.During the colonial days, if you are from Malay or Chinese medium primary school you have to attend two years of "bridge class" before going to English medium secondary school.It teaches you the basic workings of the English language and prepares you for the secondary level.
The government have to invest time and money to make it successful, not simply give in to some myopic and incompetent educationists who prefer to take the easy way out.Just like a business if you don't invest there would not be profit.
Bigger budget should be allocated to education to make the programme successful. What's the point of building nice looking schools that churned out under-achievers and mediocre students.
Speak to some of our local graduates in English and judge for yourself how emasculated the education system is.
The government is taking a defeatist attitude and the biggest losers would be the Malays.This is akin to keeping the Malays under the "tempurong." The future generations would lose out in the job market.Forever, the Malays would be confined to working for the government and GLCs.
Some Malay parents are so disillusioned with the system they prefer to send their children to Chinese vernacular schools where, if they already know English, pick up a third language, Mandarin.
Unlike, majority of Chinese and Indians the Malays in rural areas do not have the means to send their children to private tuition.
It falls on the government to provide the best education for its citizens, particularly the less fortunate, which is a future investment for the nation.
Should we allow 10 or so people decide the future of our children? Do we want a knowledgeable society or one mired in ignorance?
A referendum is one way of going to the people but it would incur unnecessary costs.It would be cheaper and faster to bring it to Parliament and let the parliamentarians vote on the issue.