Uproar over premature halt to PPSMI policy


  • Nation
  • Sunday, 05 Jan 2014

PETALING JAYA: Anguished parents cried foul over the soft landing approach to the PPSMI (teaching of Science and Maths in English) policy that has come to an abrupt halt in many schools.

Malacca Action Group for Parents in Education (Magpie) chairman Mak Chee Kin said teachers from several schools in the state had been told not to continue teaching Maths and Science in English by trainers from the Education Ministry.

“The teachers were informed by the trainers that since Science and Maths will be assessed in Bahasa Malaysia under PBSMR (Pentaksiran Berasaskan Sekolah Menengah Rendah) starting this year, there was no need to continue teaching the subjects in English,” he said during a protest organised by Association of Parents and Individuals towards Revising the Education System.

A circular released by the ministry dated Dec 13 last year stated that there would be a bilingual written test for Science and Maths under PBSMR, the school-based assessment introduced to replace the Penilaian Menengah Rendah examination.

In 2009, the Education Ministry announced the withdrawal of the PPSMI policy although both subjects would be taught in English and Bahasa Malaysia until 2020, when the final batch of students involved in the policy completed their secondary education.

 
Parents making their stand against the PPSMI policy in Petaling Jaya.

Mak also claimed that Science and Mathematics textbooks in English were not replenished causing a shortage in schools.

“It’s not a soft landing, it’s a sharp landing. Parents feel cheated and deceived by the Education Ministry,” Mak said during the gathering with a turnout of over 30 parents.

Parent Action Group for Education (Page) chairman Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim urged parents to bring up the matter with the school principals if they were not given the option of letting their children learn Science and Maths in English.

“As far as PPSMI is concerned, soft landing is a perennial problem where there are school principals who do not allow the subjects to be taught in English.

“This is insubordination to the order by the ministry.

“If there are parents and students who want English, the principal has to abide by that, the principal cannot make decisions on behalf of parents and students, there must be consultation involved,” said Noor Azimah.

She revealed that parents from several schools in the Klang Valley had complained about the soft landing issue.

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