By Peter Sibon
KUCHING, Aug 8: The national education policy should focus on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) to strengthen employability of Malaysian students at both the domestic and global market.
Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) vice-president Datuk Liwan Lagang felt the Education Ministry has not been doing the right thing to assist students to do better in critical subjects such as STEM.
Instead, the ministry was dwelling on petty issues such as black shoes, swimming lesson in hotels and the khat or jawi calligraphy subject, he said.
“It seems to me that the ministry has not done enough to promote STEM and other critical subjects in school, such as computer coding and English, which are global subjects.
“As a former educator, I feel that both teachers and students have been burdened with many unnecessary subjects.
“If khat is made compulsory, it would add extra burden to both teachers and students, as they will start from the beginning, especially in rural areas like my constituency in Belaga,” Liwan said in a statement today.
He argued that Singapore, which was considered on par with Malaysia at one time in terms of education development, is now one of the best education providers in the world.
“The way I see it, the ministry’s policy is regressing instead of progressing.
“Of what use can khat do for students who wishes to study overseas. So, I would like to advise the Education Ministry to focus on critical subjects, so that our students will become competitive upon their graduation, not only in here in Malaysia, but also globally,” Liwan said.
The state Assistant Minister of Water Supply also criticised Sarawak Pakatan Harapan for “being quiet and timid” on the khat issue.
“When they are in the opposition, they are like tigers, but now when they are in the federal government, they are like domestic cats.
“Now they are eager to take over Sarawak but they can’t even do a proper job when they govern the country. Or perhaps they are in cohort to distract the people’s attention because of their failure to fulfil their election promises?” Liwan said.
He reminded that among Pakatan’s election promises that have yet to be fulfilled included giving Sarawak more autonomy on education and health, 20 per cent revenue from oil and gas, additional income from various taxes, which will be returned to the state. — DayakDaily