FORMER fifth former P. Yallene went the extra mile when she scored A for Tamil Literature in the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) examination last year, although the subject was not taught in her school.
Now 18, the former SMK Taman Tasek Mutiara student also turned out to be the school’s top SPM scorer by scoring 5A+, 5A and an A- in the exam.
Although much of her success in the Tamil Literature subject is attributed to the fact that the school does teach Tamil Language, which she scored an A+ in, Yallene said she would not be able to pull off the feat without guidance and proper revision.
“We have four periods, or two hours of Tamil language subject taught in the school every week, but the teaching covers grammar and essay writing.
“To get assistance in Tamil Literature which covers novels, poems and drama, I asked for advice and extra lessons from the Tamil language teachers.
“I’m thankful for having Ms. Prema and Ms. Uma Devi in school for their help,” she said in an interview at her home last Tuesday.
Yallene also said that due to the new format in Tamil Literature introduced last year, there was little reference that she could obtain outside of school.
“There are no past-year exam questions to try out. Even reference books are limited at bookstores.
“I’m glad for the help and support from everyone in guiding me,” she added.
Asked about her secret, she said studying hard and paying attention was key, besides the willingness to always seek help from teachers.
“I also attended tuition for all the subjects, seven days a week.
“It was very tiring, but the reward is worth it,” she said.
Yallene said she has applied for various scholarships including from the Public Service Department. She hopes to pursue medicine and become a doctor.
Her parents who are both teachers also expressed pride in her success.
Her father A. Pandiyan, 47, who is a Maths teacher in SMK Simpang Ampat said he was happy with Yallene’s success and hopes that she will never give up learning her mother tongue.
Her mother M. Pathma, 45, who is SJK (T) Permatang Tinggi senior assistant is hoping that Yallene’s sister P. Kanimolly, 13, and brother P. Kaaviyaan, nine, will follow in her footsteps in becoming a high achiever.