More private, international schools needed to improve Sarawak’s education quality, says Manyin

Taib (fourth left) along with Manyin (second left), Tunku Putra School chairman and CMS Group Executive Director Datuk Syed Ahmad Alwee Alsree (third left) and HELP University Vice Chancellor and President Prof Datuk Dr Paul Chan (right most) perform the launch gimmick for the new Tunku Putra-HELP International School at a hotel in Kuching.

KUCHING, March 9: It is hoped that the education quality in Sarawak will be improved with the establishment of more private and international schools.

Minister of Education, Science and Technological Research Dato Sri Michael Manyin Jawong said due to the poor performance of education in the state in recent years, holistic steps need to be taken to tackle this problem quickly not only to produce quality school leavers and graduates from the state, but also to produce a quality workforce for Sarawak as it strives to become a digital economy and a high income state by 2030.

Speaking during the official launching of Tunku Putra-HELP International School at a hotel here today, Manyin said for several years, Sarawak schools’ performance in UPSR and SPM had been between second to third bottom out of 16 states in Malaysia, and if nothing were to be done, it would be impossible to achieve the state’s aspirations.

“These performances will not be helpful if we want to achieve Industry 4.0. Therefore we need quality education with creativity and innovation.

“Thankfully private and international schools like Tunku Putra School are preparing its students for that. I hope many more private and international schools to be set up in the state provide quality education.

“This will be very challenging for us, but if we don’t do it, we will be left behind by other states in Malaysia,” he said.

Seated from left, Ibraco Bhd Managing Director Datuk Chew Chiaw Han, HELP University Vice Chancellor and President Prof Datuk Dr Paul Chan, and Tunku Putra School Chairman and CMS Group Executive Director Datuk Syed Ahmad Alwee Alsree signing an agreement to collaborate for the new Tunku Putra-HELP International School, witnessed by Taib (back row, centre), Manyin (back row, second from left) and others.
Tunku Putra School Chairman and CMS Group Executive Director Datuk Syed Ahmad Alwee Alsree (right) shows Taib the signed agreement while Manyin (left) looks on.

Meanwhile, Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud urged the private sector to lend a helping hand in improving the standards of education in the state.

He said strategic partnership between corporations or companies as well as education providers was the best approach for such efforts.

“At first, I wasn’t sure if Cahya Mata Sarawak Berhad (CMS) would be able to do a good job in helping the Tunku Putra School to develop. But now I am very pleased to see CMS not only being a good partner but also bringing in more good partners in ensuring high quality education at the school.

“I am confident that this sort of strategic partnership would bring greater success to the school in the future. I pray that this partnership will show how strategic partnership would be the best approach for better education in Sarawak,” he said.

Taib said Tunku Putra School was established in 1996 and was built to provide a specialised and conducive environment to bring out the best in its students.

The Tunku Putra-HELP International School is a collaborative effort between Tunku Putra School, HELP University, CMS and Ibraco Berhad to deliver world-class education and world-class facilities at affordable fees to the people of Sarawak.

The new Tunku Putra-HELP International School will begin its first intake in January 2020 at its new purpose-built campus, which will have a capacity of 1,500 students.

HELP University Vice Chancellor and President Prof Datuk Dr Paul Chan (left) presents a memento of appreciation to Taib.

Located strategically in the NorthBank at Tabuan Jaya, one of the residential hubs of Kuching City, the school will offer both national and international curricula, for students at kindergarten, primary and secondary school levels as well as A-Levels.

The school’s international programme will offer the British Education Curriculum culminating in the widely-recognised IGCSE and GE A-Level qualifications, which are accepted by the world’s best universities. The national programme will offer the Primary School Standard Curriculum (KSSR) and Secondary School Standard Curriculum (KSSM). Mathematics and Science are further complemented with Singapore and British syllabi.

Combining the best of Western and Eastern education, students will develop higher order thinking skills (HOTS), and will master a minimum of four languages: English, Mandarin, Bahasa Malaysia and Spanish. This will enable them to work or conduct business in over 70 per cent of the world’s countries. — DayakDaily