No extra school hours
PUTRAJAYA: The additional hours to be allotted to the teaching and learning of English will not involve extra school hours, Education director-general Tan Sri Alimuddin Mohd Dom said yesterday. Rather, the periods of some other subjects such as music would be shortened to accommodate the increase in English classes.
“This is to ensure that the teachers and students are not burdened,” Alimuddin said at a press conference on “Memartabatkan
Bahasa Melayu, Memantapkan Bahasa Inggeris — New Deal for the Malaysian Education System” here.
At the Dewan Negara, Deputy Education Minister Datuk Dr Puad Zarkashi said the government would spend RM5 billion in its effort to improve the teaching and learning of English in schools.
Deputy Prime Minister and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced on Wednesday that Science and Mathematics in national schools would be taught in Bahasa Malaysia from 2012.
With this decision, the government has opted to strengthen English by introducing additional hours for the subject.
On the 13,000 English teachers and 600 retired teachers to be recruited, Alimuddin said they could apply to the ministry to serve on contract.
“Successful candidates will be asked to teach at schools near their homes. We are still discussing the age limit.” The recruitment of 1,000 English teachers from overseas would depend on ongoing talks with Australia, New Zealand, India and the United Kingdom, he said.
On textbooks for students who have to switch to studying Science and Mathematics in Bahasa Malaysia, he said the ministry might print them in both languages.
Puad, replying to Senator Datuk Samsiah Samsudin during Question Time, said several education modules would be introduced to assist teachers and students in learning the English language.
This would include modules on writing, English oral and listening skills, and grammar.
“We will ensure that English proficiency means that one can not only speak the language, but also use it correctly.” Later in the lobby, Puad said the government would save RM40 million a year from 2012 when the teaching of Mathematics and Science is carried out in Bahasa Malaysia.
He said this was the sum saved from subject incentive payments (called BISP) to teachers who currently teach the two subjects in English,.
The allowance is to allow the teachers involved to buy reference books or take tuition to improve their command of the English language.
Puad also said the decision to stop incentive payments will affect 61,040 teachers teaching Mathematics in primary schools and 26,389 teachers in secondary schools.
It will also affect 46,946 Science teachers in primary schools and 25,781 in secondary schools.