Thursday, August 13

More money for rural schools

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DPM says bigger fund necessary to create right environment for quality education

MIRI: Sarawak and Sabah will get more allocations for the development of their rural schools, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin yesterday.

CHESS BUFF: Muhyiddin moves his chess piece during a game at Tamu Muhibbah. Watching him from left are Taib, Lee, Pujut assemblyman Andy Chia and Dr Chan.

CHESS BUFF: Muhyiddin moves his chess piece during a game at Tamu Muhibbah. Watching him from left are Taib, Lee, Pujut assemblyman Andy Chia and Dr Chan.

Disclosing this at the launch of Sekolah Kebangsaan Kampung Bakam, Muhyiddin, who is also Education Minister, said the government under the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak was committed to improving the quality of education in all schools in the country, especially those in the rural areas.

“Our focus is to further improve the quality of education available in schools in the rural areas of Sarawak and Sabah,” he said, adding that education was the government’s top priority.

“This can be seen through big allocations given to the Education Ministry to further improve the quality of education in the state,” he explained.

According to Muhyiddin, in every budget announcement, 26 per cent were allocated for developing and enhancing education in the country.

He said the federal government’s plan was to continue to repair or construct new schools with better infrastructure including water and electricity supply.

“In Sarawak and Sabah, construction cost for such projects is almost two or three times more … if the cost is RM20 million in the peninsula, it is almost RM50 million here,” he said.

Also present yesterday were Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud; his deputies, Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan and Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu Numpang; Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Peter Chin Fah Kui; Deputy Minister of International Trade and Industry Datuk Jacob Dungau Sagan; State Education Director Dr Julaihi Bujang; Sibuti MP Ahmad Lai Bujang; state cabinet members; and local dignitaries.

Muhyiddin also spoke highly of Sarawakians who have become  role models not only to fellow Sarawakians but also to all Malaysians.

He said people like Datuk Seri Idris Jala, a Kelabit, showed that the state’s education system was capable of producing successful personalities.

Muhyiddin also announced that rewards would be given to excellent schools and their headmasters and teachers.

“Evaluation of performance will start this year, and reward next year,” he said.

At a dinner hosted by the state last night, the deputy prime minister assured that Sarawak would be given “special attention by the federal government to address areas that are still lacking”.

He said addressing the state’s lack of infrastructure like roads, school buildings and ICT development was part of the national Key Result Areas.