Thursday, July 05, 2007

The plight of Tamil schools

Hopefully, I'll be able to blog about the latest announcement by the Education Minister in regards to the progress the Ministry has made in fulfilling the objectives of the Education Blueprint (2006-2010) and the 9MP (especially after the full report is out on the Ministry's website). But for now, I'll focus on one element of that progress report which is to make Tamil schools all fully government supported.

According to a recent report in the Star (taken from Malaysian Nanban), " There are 524 Tamil schools in the country with about 150 of them in rural areas and estates, and being partly aided by the government." I'm not sure if this is saying that only 150 out of 524 Tamil schools are partly aided schools or that 150 Tamil schools that are in rural areas and estates are partly aided (there might be other Tamil schools in urban areas which are also partly aided).

As far as I know, partly aided schools (mostly SRJK(C) and SRJK(T)) are schools were the government / MOE pays the salaries of the teachers and staff but does not allocate money for improving or building new infrastructure in these schools e.g. computer labs, upgrading of facilities, new buildings etc... This means that the physical state of many of these partly aided schools, especially those in rural areas and the estates, is very poor.

My impression is that Tamil schools, on the whole, lack the community support which many of the Chinese schools have. Some of this can be explained by the income levels of the parents in the estates where many of these Tamil schools are located. There are other institutional explanations as well such as the better organized Chinese education movement and the larger numbers of Chinese who send their children to the Chinese primary schools.

According to a report by MIED (Maju Institute for Education Development), dated from 2004, "There are 376(71.5%) out of 526 Tamil schools classified as partially aided schools." This may have changed over the past 3 years or so but the announcement by the Education Minister, Hishammudin Tun Hussein, to have all Tamil schools eventually moved to a fully aided status is certainly welcome news for the Indian community, especially those living in the estates.


Praveen R. said...

Hi there

Sorry for going off topic

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Anonymous said...

Samy Vellu, di mana kamu?

Anonymous said...

After 50 years of Merdeka and only now they think of this? The community has been fighting fo this for ages now. I smell a vote fishing ploy.