Singapore Straits Times journalist, Yong Yen Nie uncovers the education problems in Malaysia.
The United Chinese School Association of Malaysia known as Dong held a rally supported by opposition party members demanding an overhaul in Malaysian education system.
1. They protested against the National School Curriculum replacing Vernacular Schools Curriculum. The rally was supported by Tamil school groups and Islamic school groups. The reasons are :
- The flip-flops policy in the language used to teach Mathematics and Science.
- The low quality of teachers.
2. Dong Zong put the blame on the Nationals Education Blueprint, a 12-year plan released in September. In this policy, Bahasa Malaysia is made to be the main vehicle of teaching in vernacular schools. In government aided schools where mother tongue Chinese / Tamil is used, Bahasa Malaysia and English are taught as subjects.
3. Under the new plan, vernacular schools must increase the period of teaching Bahasa Malaysia from 180 to 570 minutes per week beginning from Primary 4. But Dong Zong president Yap Sin Tian objected to the new plan as it will cause an imbalance in vernacular schools and this will lose their identities.
4. Dong Zong’s demand for more opening of Chinese independent schools was not granted.
5. Yong Yen Nie wrote that many parents prefer to send their children to Chinese schools because they believe that the schools have better quality of teachers.
6. Yong Y N also, took sides along with those who showed no confidence over Mr Muhyiddin Yassin, the Education Minister’s clarification that all schools will benefit from the upgrading of the education plan.
7. Mr Mustafa Kamil Ayub, a member from a civil liberties hoped that students from vernacular schools to be given a fair treatment as in national schools. Mustafa is a blurred member who did not see the irrelevant reason to join in the rally.
· Dong Zong also argued that government must preserve and sustain the development of multi-cultures and languages.
How come Dong Zong is blurred by the fact that Bahasa Malaysia needs more exposure in vernacular school curriculum in order to enrich and develop the multi-cultures and languages?
· Yong Yen Nie failed to perceive the advantages for every citizen having acquired Bahasa Malaysia as a national language.
· Yong Yen Nie is another stereo-type of race chauvinist, who supported the unreasonable demand of Dong Zong. She lacks far- sighted insight on the future of Malaysian children. The new generation, Y or Z ought to master their national language that unites Malaysians together.
· She should add on her article the benefit of mastering national language by all races to build patriotic, nationalistic, gracious citizens that could bring about harmonious living in a cohesive society for Malaysia.