Ministry to act against those who switch to BM too soon

PUTRAJAYA: Action can be taken against teachers who start teaching Mathematics and Science fully in Bahasa Malaysia from next year instead of waiting for the actual implementation in 2012.

Education director-general Tan Sri Alimuddin Mohd Dom said such teachers would receive warning letters as the policy on the Teaching of Mathematics and Science in English (PPSMI) was on-going.

“They must continue teaching in English as the material used, such as textbooks and syllabus, are still in English,” he told reporters after chairing a roundtable meeting on the ministry’s new strategy to uphold Bahasa Malaysia and strengthen English (MBMMBI).

He urged headmasters and principals to monitor the situation.

“Although teachers are encouraged to include some terms for the two subjects in Bahasa Malaysia so students can have a ‘soft landing’, they must continue teaching in English,” he stressed.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said last month that the Government had decided to reverse the PPSMI policy and revert to Bahasa Malaysia in national schools and Chinese and Tamil in vernacular schools.

He said this meant that from 2012, pupils in Years One and Four and students in Forms One and Four in national primary and secondary schools would study the two subjects in Bahasa Malaysia while those in vernacular schools would be taught in their mother tongue (Chinese and Tamil).

“The UPSR, PMR and SPM examinations will continue to be in two languages until 2016, 2013 and 2015 respectively,” he said.

This, he added, meant that the use of Bahasa Malaysia and mother tongue would be implemented fully in national primary and vernacular schools in 2017, and 2016 in secondary schools.

Asked why the two subjects could not be taught in Bahasa Malaysia and mother tongue from next year, Alimuddin said the ministry needed time to prepare for the change in policy.

“It takes a minimum of 18 months to prepare just the textbooks — from the drafting period, assessment meetings, the actual printing and sending the books to schools,” he said.

He said they also needed to study the views of experts in strengthening the English curriculum.

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