Important to master many languages — Lee

Lee (third left) presents a school-leaving certificate to a Primary 6 pupil. Looking on, at second left, is Mariam.

MIRI: It would be an additional advantage for a student to not only master the national language Bahasa Melayu and English, but is also fluent in other languages such as Mandarin.

Mastering a third language or more would enable Sarawakians to be part of the global community, says Assistant Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Datuk Lee Kim Shin.

“The Sarawak government wants its people to be not only well-versed in the national and English languages, (but) we also want them to learn other languages like Mandarin.

“This is part of the effort to ensure that the people of Sarawak are able to play their part pro-actively as a global community,” he spoke during the SK St Joseph Miri’s appreciation ceremony at Mega Hotel here yesterday.

Lee, who is Senadin assemblyman, said as an effort to enhance the quality of education in Sarawak further, the Sarawak government had set up the Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Research with the aim to produce a pool of human capital in science and technology fields.

“That is why the state government strongly emphasises on the need for students to master the English language, as most of the information related to science and technology is written in the international language of English.”

Touching on school development, Lee said the strong cooperation between teachers and parents would give great impact to a school’s achievement – both in academics and co-curriculum.

He cited SK St Joseph Miri as a fine example, where parents show their commitment by attending any event hosted by the school.

“If the teachers are able to work very well with the parents as a strong team, more development projects to improve the school facilities could be carried out.

“Without support from the parents, the school cannot achieve its mission totally.”

At the same time, Lee called upon the school management to continue raising its standard of education.

“For a student, it is important for he or she to not only excel in academics, but also to be involved actively in co-curriculum activities like sports and community works, which are good for them to develop social skills that they might not get from classroom learning.”

SK St Joseph Miri headmistress Mariam Menadu Grasi was also present.

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