Little hiccups as schools start teaching Maths and Science in EnglishBY MUSTAFA KAMAL BASRI AND ANTHONY TAN
TERENGGANU: No major problems were encountered when more than 200,000 Year One and Form One pupils in three states started their Mathematics and Science lessons in English yesterday.
Education authorities in Terengganu, Kelantan and Kedah - the three states that began the new school year – reported the switch to English after about 25 years to be smooth.
However, they expected minor hiccups to crop up over the next few weeks and would gather feedback daily to ensure teething problems were rectified immediately.
Inspectors from the state branches of the Schools Inspectorate were deployed to several schools to help in the transition and obtain first-hand information on problems encountered.
Education Director-General Datuk Abdul Rafie Mahat, who visited several primary schools in the state, said the switch on the first day appeared smooth because all schools were well-prepared with the necessary equipment and teachers adequately trained for the purpose.
He said almost all 9,198 schools in the country had been equipped with notebook computers and LCD projectors.
In ALOR STAR, the state education department did not receive any complaint although an official said it was too early to say if there would be any problems.
National Union of Teaching Profession (NUTP) Kedah branch secretary Lim Cheng Uo said he did not hear of any hiccups or problems in the schools that reopened yesterday.
He said the teachers had been well trained and schools adequately equipped to teach both subjects in English.
He said some primary schools might not have started using the notebook computer, LCD projector and screen to teach the two subjects in Year One as they were still registering pupils or were conducting orientation.
In KOTA BARU, an official from the Primary School Unit of the state education department, Ibrahim Jaafar, said no negative reports were received yesterday, reports MENG YEW CHOONG.
He said that it was difficult to gauge how smooth the first day went as the department was still compiling reports from all the district education offices.
“As it is, we have yet to receive any negative report. We plan to conduct a post-mortem based on the full report after one week,” said Ibrahim, who added that primary school teachers would receive continuous training on computer literacy in order to make them fully competent in handling the equipment.
“There should not be any problems on the ground as the department had temporarily frozen transfers of qualified teachers from their current schools. We will not move them around until we have found suitable replacements for them,” he said.