14 June, 2009

150,000: The number for English excellence.

This is the number that puts the greatminds of this country into a limbo. It seems suddenly politicians and educators seem to care about this 150,00 children who stand to fail their SPM if English is made a compulsory subject to pass. What seems to be the blind spot is that it needn't be an immediate implementation.

Of course resources as thus far is pretty tight. There are simply not enough English teachers to go around but I am baffled. We have TESL (Teaching English as Second Language) programmes offered in our local varsities. Now for these many years where have all these graduates gone? Were they not given the attention by the government to place them in the education of Malaysian human resource?

One solution is that this clould be implemented in a gradual manner. One way is that the passing grade for english can be lowered and brought up annually. Another is an intensive programme starting form 1 students to prepare them for SPM in the next 4 years. During these years also the ministry can pull as many TESL graduates as possible to fill in the positions needed. A 5 year plan should be very feasible and by doing that we wont have 150,00 SPM failures.

What should the government not do is taking too long a time to come up with a plan. Politicians and educators have to strike a balance.... but most importantly to make sure we wont waste our future resources. These kids need English and we know it. If the knowledge is contained within sanskrit even, we have to push so that we will master the language. SO, what seems to be the problem? Loss of votes? Loss of power? Loss of riches? The decision has to be made and it has to be made now. Sorry for those who fail~ but if everyone knows how important English is we wouldn't have this problem in the first place.

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