No critical shortage of teachers in Sarawak, says minister
By:Fasiha Khushiri
Date:
DUN-sagah1-2911-man1

KUCHING: Sarawak is not facing any issues of critical shortage of teachers in the state, said Education, Innovation and Talent Development Minister Datuk Roland Sagah Wee Inn.

Sagah noted that in fact, the state has achieved the 90:10 ratio of Sarawakian to non-Sarawakian teachers teaching in Sarawak.

“We must thank the Ministry of Education (MoE) for the endeavour to achieve the ratio as aspired by all Sarawakians,” he said.

He said this in his ministerial winding-up speech at Sarawak State Legislative Assembly (DUN) sitting today (Nov 29).

However, Sagah said there are still issues on the placement of teachers due to teaching subject specialisation and family-related matters.

“It is a policy to put spouses together within the same location. We do not want the husband to teach in Lundu, while the wife teaches in Lawas,” he said.

On another note, he said teaching of subjects of Science and Mathematics in English first implemented in 2020 is now in its third year, whereas the Continuous Professional Development Programmes (CPD) for Science and Mathematics Teachers is in its fourth year, beginning in 2019.

“Based on feedback from teachers, they have little problem delivering their lessons in English for both Science and Mathematics. Students too have shown a positive attitude towards the lessons conducted in English.

“However, it is considered premature to determine the impact of the programme. It would take the entire 6-year primary education to gauge the impact.

“Nevertheless, I am confident that the programme will be able to achieve the desired impact in the long term,” he said.

To date, he added, the programme has benefited more than 80,000 students and 5,100 teachers throughout Sarawak.

In addition to the teaching of Science and Mathematics in English, the ministry also initiated the CPD for school leaders and teachers.

The programme was initiated in 2017 when the ministry was first established. The initiative is to complement teachers’ development programmes under the State Education Department.

Among major activities carried out included the Sarawak English Language Education Symposium (SELES) which entered its sixth edition.

“Based on feedback from the participants, it remained an excellent platform for our English educators to meet, share and present their projects and initiatives carried out in their respective schools. Since 2017, SELES has benefited 3,000 teachers,” said Sagah.

Sagah added that from the feedback from a teacher from Lawas, teachers in Sarawak especially from rural schools are a privileged lot to be given the opportunity to attend such symposiums borne by the Sarawak government.

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