KOTA KINABALU: Love, said SK Stella Maris principal, Crispin Payus, is the main ingredient required to churn out disciplined students.
“If you love your students and treat them with respect, you can get them to be better disciplined, and aim higher in their studies because they know that you will be proud of their achievements,” he said when sharing some of the secrets of the school’s steady rise in the UPSR examination results in the last two years.
Last year, 25 of the school’s students attained 5A’s, while this year, the number of students who attained 5A’s has jumped to 35 students.
“We’re in the second spot among schools in Kota Kinabalu. SK Gaya grabbed the first spot with 38 students attaining 5A’s,” he said.
He was proud of the achievements of the school’s primary six students, and said that this was the reward for all the hard work given by the students, the teachers, the parents and teachers association members and even the community leaders.
“Our parents and teachers association was unending in giving out their support to the teachers and to the school. They provided us with the means to carry out tuition classes after the normal school session to the Primary Six students,” he said.
And the teachers also did their best, he added.
“They sacrificed their free time to teach the students.”
“Even the school board played an imperative part, providing us with their ideas, helping us to grow stronger,” he said.
His only qualm with the school’s growing strength in its achievements in the UPSR examination is popularity.
“We get requests to receive new students all the time, but we’re already full to the brim. Our classes cannot cater for anymore students, and our teachers are teaching more than 50 students per class.”
He said having too many students per class was not conducive for the learning and teaching of both the students and their teachers.
Meanwhile, the 5A’s students from SK Stella Maris who were approached by The Borneo Post yesterday expressed surprise, glee, tears and happiness as they exchanged hugs and handshakes with each other.
Kristy Samunting, who is one of the school’s avid performer, said she read books and practised on examination questions everyday prior to the examination.
“I was expecting four A’s in the examination, so this is something really unexpected,” she said.
Her friend, Maegan Selena Anne Fletcher on the other hand said her daily activity prior to the examination was watching television.
“I’m really surprised to get an A for my Bahasa Melayu,” she said.
Crystal Estherlie attributed her 5A’s to her teachers in school as well as those who were responsible for giving tuition after school hours.
“I made it a point to concentrate fully when lessons start.”
Selena Azri, one of the consistent 5A’s achievers at the school attributed her success to sheer hard work.
“It was well worth it. I concentrated during class, and studied by myself after school,” she said.
She added that she wants to become a lawyer one day.
Beth Eva Mojilip has a different tactic altogether when it comes to learning.
“I opted for books that are catered to Form One students to better my understanding. I read a lot,” she said.
Sarah Lynn Chin, Danya Jill Lingkapo, Julia Liziim and Christine Alvarez Wong, attributed their colourful results to hard work, tuition after school and leaving fun out for months prior to the examination.
The only male interviewee, Seth Brandon, was speechless when he was congratulated by his teachers.
“I did my best. I studied everyday, but I didn’t think I would get 5A’s.”
He said his weakest subjects were Bahasa Melayu and Mathematics and was ecstatic that he got As for those as well.
After the interview, Seth was seen congratulating his peers and telling those who didn’t manage to do so well that there were still opportunities available for them to work harder and excel.
“Our next examination is coming in a few years’ time. We have another chance to prove ourselves then,” he was heard saying.