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Old 17-01-2005, 09:36 PM
ipohan ipohan is offline
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Just read this news, ex-soldiers to be the teachers. What do you think?

Jan 17, 2005
Parents alarmed over ex-troops as teachers
KL's move to instil school discipline sparks worries of harsh methods

By Carolyn Hong

KUALA LUMPUR - AMID concern that discipline in Malaysian schools is deteriorating steadily, the government plans to hire former soldiers to keep students in line.

But this has many parents alarmed.

Education Minister Hishammuddin Hussein said last week that the Cabinet had discussed roping in retired soldiers to help stamp out rising indiscipline in schools.

They will be trained as disciplinary and physical education teachers. They could even fill other posts if there is a shortage of candidates.

'We are looking at providing teacher training programmes for soldiers who have gone on optional retirement or have just retired,' Datuk Seri Hishammuddin was quoted as saying in The Star.

'We will select suitable courses for them in various disciplines from six months to a year, or whatever is necessary.'

But worried parents feel that soldiers, despite being models of discipline, do not have the skills to handle youngsters.

They say that schools could become mini army camps where their children could be subjected to the harsh methods of army life.

The teachers' union has lent support to the parents, saying that soldiers do not have the specialised skills needed to tackle the problem of discipline in schools.

National Union of the Teaching Profession secretary-general Lok Yim Pheng said they would first need to undergo special orientation programmes to help them understand young children.

'Disciplining soldiers and schoolchildren are two very different things,' she said.

A parent, Mr Ridzuan Iskandar, said it was not a workable idea as schools should not be run like army camps.

A strongly worded comment in the Chinese-language Nanyang Siang Pau yesterday urged the government not to turn schools into military institutions.

It said the proposal was fraught with problems and gave two reasons why it would not work - the generally low education levels of soldiers and the 'tyrannical' method of absolute submission practised in the army.

'Once problematic students get the chance, they could very well retaliate and cause the problem (of indiscipline) to get out of hand,' the newspaper said.

According to Datuk Hishammuddin, the plan should get off the ground by early next year, and would be implemented along with other changes, such as adjustments to the co-curriculum programmes.

This is the latest attempt by the government to remake the national school system, which has been shunned by parents following a decline in the quality of teaching and a rise in problems such as religious intolerance and indiscipline.

A committee was set up to tackle school discipline after Muhammad Farid Ibrahim, a student in Negeri Sembilan, died after being beaten up by a group of students in March last year.

The police said last month that two secret societies have been found to be using schools as recruitment grounds for students aged 15 to 17. Two schools were targeted.

Also, about two months ago, gang members in Labis, Johor, were arrested for trying to force students to join their gang.

Source: The Straits Times - Singapore

[ 17.01.2005, 09:37 PM: Message edited by: ipohan ]
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