KUCHING: Sarawak wants the school-based teacher training programme to be revived to produce sufficient trained teachers to meet the state’s needs.
Welfare, Women and Family Development Minister Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said this would help achieve the target of having 90% of teaching positions in the state filled by Sarawakians within three years.
“We will propose to the Education Ministry to train the teachers that we need under this programme. It was discontinued in 2005 but we want it to be revived so that we will have enough teachers to meet the 90:10 ratio,” she said.
The ratio was announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak during the Malaysia Day celebration last month as part of measures to empower Sarawak and Sabah.
At present there are 30,956 Sarawakian teachers in primary and secondary schools in the state, comprising 76.3%, while 8,890 or 21.9% are from peninsular Malaysia.
Fatimah said those who did not have teaching qualifications could be recruited and trained under the programme to meet the projected shortfall of primary school teachers.
“Based on the Education Department’s statistics, some 3,127 primary school teachers from peninsular Malaysia are projected to be transferred from Sarawak by 2018 while the supply of graduates from Teacher Education Institutes will be 1,494, leaving us with a deficit of 1,633 teachers,” she said.
Fatimah also said the department was formulating an action plan to achieve the 90% target.
Besides reviving the school-based training programme, its proposals include facilitating the transfer of teachers based on existing procedures, giving priority to Sarawakian teachers to be posted in the state and taking in more Sarawakian applicants into teacher training courses.