Tuesday, October 11, 2011

PPSMI - An election issue?

If ever there was even the remotest possibility of the existence of a Silent Majority, it would have to be Malaysian parents whose children are in the Primary and Secondary schools that are subjected to the National Syllabus.

Education is a perpetually hot issue in every country anywhere in the world. Malaysia is no different.

The Education Ministry has sought to offer free text books. Under the 2012 Budget, it is seeking to remove school fees. All these, in an effort to pander to parents.

In the life of Malaysian parents, we wear many hats, of course. At work, we wear one hat. With friends, we wear another hat. 

Surely the most important hat that we wear must be that of a parent to school-going children.

Children are a constant reminder to parents that there is a need to protect the future. The future of our children are the future of Malaysia. Malaysian children embody the future of Malaysia. They personify the Malaysian future.

So, it is not hyperbole when I say that I am angry with the Minister of Education. Yes, I'm very angry.

When Najib ascended to the Prime Ministership of Malaysia he was quoted as saying that the era of Government knows best is over.

Obviously the Minister of Education didn't read about it. Or, maybe he doesn't believe that statement to be true. Possibly, he thinks the Prime Minister was making a lighthearted, jocular remark. Maybe he doesn't care what that statement was intended to mean.


The fact is that the position of the Minister of Education is that PPSMI is a policy that will be revoked.

This is the thing that pisses me off.

WHY was a policy change made, in the wake of a strong electoral message in 2008, without prior consultation with all stakeholders in Malaysia's Primary and Secondary education?

WHY was the consultation restricted to some doctrinal and dogmatic and myopic few, whoever they may be?

There is recent evidence to show that so-called experts or academics in Malaysia are wobbly in their reasoning. An immediate example would be the Council of Professors who declared that Malaysia was never colonised. They did not understand the difference between a de jure position and a de facto reality. 

Were these some of the people that the Ministry of Education consulted with in deciding to reverse the PPSMI?

The revocation of the policy on PPSMI is, to my mind, a clear and unequivocal sign that the ruling coalition or, at the very least, the Minister of Education, believes that the "Government knows best" philosophy is still the way to go. 

I, for one, am making PPSMI an election issue.

In this coming GE13, I am voting as a PARENT.

I'm not going into the polling booth with any other hats. I'll only be wearing the hat of a PARENT.

I can only hope that the rest of the Silent Majority of PARENTS (and all other concerned Malaysian voters) will do likewise.


Anonymous said...

I'm with you on this.

walla said...

One understands one of the reasons why the MOE is adamant about not making the revocation is that it doesn't want to be seen as flip-flopping.

Well, excuuuse me Mr MOE, if you hadn't flipped in the first place, you wouldn't now be required to flop, would you?

But do take note the rakyat have all flipped that you are a flop, Mr MOE.

Let's all imagine something. A mysterious vessel has breached our water limit and is approaching at dreadnought speed. How shall our sub pursue to intercept it?

What the MOE will reply is that since it's not in the syllabus and since the problem is not couched in BM, no student need answer.

Well, that vessel looks like a five megaton capitation torpedo heading for one of our ports. The answer is needed yesterday.

Perhaps this then?

What matters in this world is not polished pants and boots or flying flags and fools. It's about being able to harness knowledge and technology to control situations.

The MOE has lost all credibility in the way it is addressing this PPSMI dilemma. Because it wants face, it ignores genuine and well-founded concerns of parents for the future of their charges and it proceeds to ram the most lunatic and idiotic standard approach on everyone to such an extent all can be excused for thinking that the standard policy mindset has always been if our malays can't get it, no one else should, obviously forgetting that a sizable number of the parents making the requests are the more enlightened malays ourselves.

In being so blinkered, the MOE is standardizing to some stand that is wrong and irrelevant for the country and the children.

Making a mistake, its only recourse seems to be to make the mistake bigger so that it covers the whole landscape until it becomes the background in the hope people won't notice.

But they will because the world will tell them in no uncertain terms. Whether they be rural or urban.

Let me drive home this point. Our malay language primacy policy has diminished the potential of all our young who have to go through the paper-mill of the MOE. Knowledge and skills in any subject in the world do not end with tingkatan lima anjuran kementerian pelajaran malaysia.

And we want to be a high-income economy, produce ph.d's and nobel prize winners? Pass over some of that controlled substance they've been sniffing.

Nuts! And where's the spittoon?

Anonymous said...

PPSMI is good for Malaysian pupils esp. those who will be entering university doing science based courses. Mahathir had been wise. Though I'd love to see it being continued, I believe it will be permanently scrapped forever. You know why? The BN govt. doesn't want PPSMI, the opposition doesn't want it either. Anwar publicly opposed it a few days before Muhyi announced it was scrapped and the opposition also lead a street demonstration to oppose PPSMI. So I believe PPSMI will be gone forever whoever wins the next election.

The decision to abolish it was a political decision. Politicians always make decisions based on the opportunity to win votes. The problem is, the uneducated and narrow minded parents who are the in fact the majority of the electorate don't want PPSMI and thus the cabinet in order to win their hearts, did what pleased them. Yes we hear about so many parents objecting to the abolisment but they are in fact the minority and only the minority parents are voicing out their displeasures, making us think that they are the majority.

Still, I think the govt. should create a win win situation by giving the schools and parents the option instead of making such a radical move.

Anonymous said...

Said whatever u want, bolihland is indeed governed by blur-sotongs & syok-sendiri troglodytes.

Another glaring example is the recent budget announcement of raising the loan ceiling of the 'my 1st home plan' from RM 22k to 40K.

Nothing wrong with that superficially, yes?

Look closer.

Raising the loan ceiling limit don't lessen the problem faced by the category of the people that that plan is supposed to help.

The problem is NOT the loan amount, the problem IS the income of the lender, that can fulfill the bank's loan per-requisites in the 1st place.

Now, how could a RM3k+ income individual manages a mortgage repayment of RM22k loan over a period of 30yrs? That, in itself, is already a no-brain twister.

Yet, the '1M'sia' solution is to raise the loan ceiling from RM22K to RM40K!

Perhaps the true beneficiary of that solution is those rent-seekers, who have the spare cash to 'invest' for 'rent' from these RM3K+ income-earners.

After all, with the near collapse of the financial instrument overseas, what's better investment place than at home that can be easily 'tweak'?

In a way, this does tied in with the PPSMI.

Who educates the administrators, who in turn plan the educational policy?

We r in the loop of that vicious circle of positive chain reaction of self delusion.

Who said the recent budget gave no incentive for the middle-income group?

At least, they r now been thunder-strucked into reality check that it's about time to revisit that thought of 'abandon a fast-sinking ship'.

Too bad for those low-incomers, who r forever the chess-suckers. Too stupid to care. Too occupied by daily-living issues to have time to look over the racial/political/religious gimmicks. Too religious that only after-life is the true salvation from the current sufferings!

Anonymous said...

I say this post on Najib's Facebook
by a Tracey Goh


My daughter has been studying science & maths in English for the last 6 years and will be in Form 1 next year, We speak English at home as a forst language. Can Dato Seri please instruct the MOE to allow my daughter an option to study Science & Maths in English.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anon 7:36,
Its no use. They've made up their minds, the new books have been printed too.
Take solace in the fact that if your daughter who is brought up in an english speaking house has learned all her other subjects in BM - KT, Moral, Civic etc she'll soon take to Math and Science in BM like a duck to water.