05 September 2008

Teachers Had Themselves To Blame.

A recent survey found 35% of the teachers picked randomly by the Education Ministry, lacked the proficiency to effectively teach the Science and Maths subjects in the English language. A rather alarming find indeed considering it has been more than three years since the teaching of the subjects were implemented.

I am by no mean inconsiderate with the plight of the teachers involved as they had to adjust themselves teaching in a language which understandably, they will need time to be fully effective but three years is a long time to make improvements which can only mean one thing. They did not try or make any attempt hard enough to improve themselves.

This made me recalled my experience during my years in secondary school. It was the pioneering years where all the subjects except the English language were all taught in Bahasa Malaysia or Bahasa Melayu (back then the name kept inter changed).

What a chaotic years it was when some the teachers involved initially had to practically utilized the use of rojak language (Bahasa + English + Chinese) just to point out and explained some of the terminologies to us back then. The worst hit subjects ironically was also the Sciences and Maths subjects.

While it was chaotic, it was also fun at the same time when students and teachers alike worked together to help tackle the tricky situation during the first few months until it gradually improved.

As I recall those years to compare the teachers then with the crop that we have now teaching our children, I found glaring differences. I believed teachers back had chosen the teaching profession as a lifetime career for their strong conviction to teach.

I may not be too far of the mark to say that some of the new bred of teachers we had now chose teaching profession because they had to or they had no other choice. It may came as second or even the third choice in their wish list of preffered jobs after failing to secure their first choice jobs.

If that is the case, then it is really a sad situation where our children will be the products of teaching and guidance from half hearted and reluctant teachers who are there for many reasons but to teach. They stayed since it is a government salaried job which is much better than nothing and since it is also a job which comes with all the attractive perks.

So for the 35%, I had only this to say: Buck up and improve yourselves or quit before you do much damages. Enroll in night classes if necessary besides the courses arranged by the Education Ministry. Teaching used to be highly regarded and respected profession but that somehow had waned over the years. The time had come to earn that respect back and do not blame the government for your failures, you had only yourselves to blame.

I had a sister who is a teacher. From an ordinary Maktab Perguruan certificate, she now holds a Master degree and still in the same profession. Do not let all her hard work and of the others came into disrepute due to the apathy of the rotten few.

Related articles: The Stars -

35% of teachers lack good command of English

NUTP blames government for teachers' poor English skills

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