TEACH from the heart, strive to make a difference and create a level playing field for students.
That was the advice two Malaysian teachers, who did the country proud when they received the Global Teacher Award 2020 for their contributions towards the country’s education sector, wished to share with their peers.
Former Science teacher Dr Chee Ken Nee from SMS Seri Puteri, Kuala Lumpur, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT) teacher Mohd Fadzli Ishak from SK Taman Bukit Indah, Johor, were among 500 teachers from 110 countries shortlisted for the honour.
Chee hopes his passion for educating and training students will create a chain effect, producing graduates who are the “best of the best” to fulfil the government’s Shared Prosperity Vision 2030.
“There is always room for improvement in our country’s education system. The Education Ministry is working hard to upgrade and improve it.
“A principle I stick by is to always carry out our duties from our hearts, because this will then bring happiness in unexpected ways, ” he told StarEdu in an interview to mark Teachers Day on May 16.
Chee applied for the award with the pure aim of making the country proud and showing Malaysia’s capabilities to the rest of the world.
“I want to serve the country by educating students so that they become good citizens with great knowledge, possess 21st century skills and more importantly, have noble values.
“I was quite surprised and delighted to have won. This award is very meaningful to me as an educator.
“This proves that our country’s education system and our educators are on par with the international standard, ” he said.
Besides teaching his students Science in innovative ways, Chee advises them on their robotic projects.
He has presented at international conferences in the United States, and written textbooks for Forms Three, Four and Five in Biology, Mathematics and Additional Mathematics.
Having worked as a schoolteacher for 10 years, he was promoted to teach at Universiti Pendidikan Sultan Idris last August as a senior lecturer in the Department of Computing at the Faculty of Arts, Computing and Creative Multimedia.
His other achievements include being recognised as the top 30 in the Malaysia Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert 2020.
Mohd Fadzli, who has been an educator for 12 years, loves teaching because it gives him the avenue to make a difference and create equal opportunities for his pupils.
“When you win an international award, you become a role model for other educators. I hope I will be able to inspire other educators to prepare pupils to be future ready, ” he said, adding that he was ecstatic when he received the email announcing his win.
He said it was the same feeling he had when he was selected to represent Malaysia at the Global Education Exchange Paris in 2019.
“I love to meet other passionate educators who are keen on making changes for the future of our pupils, ” said Mohd Fadzli, who won the Gamechanger in Edutech Frog Teacher Award 2019.
The award by FrogAsia was to honour teachers for their outstanding efforts in shaping the future of the nation.
Among his contributions that led to his winning of the award included being Malaysia’s speaker at the ALCoB Internet Volunteer (AIV) Webinar for Teachers in the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec). The event was organised by South Korea’s Education Ministry, and Malaysia’s representative for the FutureReadyASEAN competition organised by the Asean Foundation.
The Global Teacher Award is an annual award ceremony organised by an India-based education research company aimed at recognising efforts by teachers from around the globe. A virtual ceremony was held in New Delhi, India, on Nov 22 last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The winners received a trophy and a certificate each.