Call on Mahathir to incorporate an eight-point New Deal for Mother-Tongue Education in the 2004 budget including devoting all nine subjects in the 2-4-3 formula to teaching English in Chinese primary schools Std. One
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): The joint survey of Dong Zong and Selangor/Kuala Lumpur Federation of Chinese School Committees yesterday reported that although there was an increase of 183,000 pupils in Chinese primary schools in the past 30 years, there had not only been no increase of Chinese primary schools but a reduction of 62 schools – which is most outrageous, contrary of all sound principles of healthy development of mother-tongue education in plural Malaysia.
With the approach of the next general election, the MCA leadership is again dangling the “carrot” of the Barisan Nasional promise to build a few new Chinese primary schools, although the 1999 Barisan Nasional general election pledge to open six new Chinese primary schools before the next general election has still to be fulfilled – and when hundreds of national primary schools had been constructed during the period.
DAP calls on the government to stop politicizing the issue of mother-tongue education in the country, using the promise of building a few Chinese primary schools to buy the Chinese voters.
Instead, DAP calls on the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad to rectify the injustices and unfair treatment suffered by Chinese and Tamil primary schools in the past few decades, and in the 2004 Budget to be presented to Parliament tomorrow incorporate an eight-point New Deal for Mother-Tongue Education including devoting all nine subjects in the 2-4-3 formula to teaching English in Chinese primary schools Std. One, viz:
If there is can be no abandonment of the 2-4-3 formula for Std. One for Chinese primary schools, all the nine new periods should be devoted to the teaching of English as pupils with all nine periods teaching English would end up having better proficiency in English, mathematics and science than under the present 2-4-3 formula at the end of the primary schooling system.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman