KUCHING: The Education Ministry’s policy which only allows government schools to employ graduates from public universities and teachers training institutes have to be amended to create more opportunities for graduates of private universities and colleges.
Sidma College Sarawak chairman Dr Mornie Kambrie said the policy introduced in February 2010 had prevented many Bachelor of Education (BoE) graduates of private universities and colleges from teaching at public schools.
He explained that the policy was the reason behind the inability of graduates from Universiti Tun Abdul Razak (UniRazak) to be employed as teachers and not because the degrees were not recognised by the Malaysian Qualifications Agency (MQA) and Ministry of Education (MoE).
Mornie said this in light of last Saturday’s media report of at least 39 UniRazak graduates remaining jobless after completing their Bachelor of Education from the university in December 2013.
He added, the policy had deprived Sarawak the service of capable local graduates who can teach in public schools throughout the state especially the rural areas.
He reiterated that there is nothing wrong with UniRazak BoE programmes which had produced capable graduates who became good teachers as the university’s degree and diploma programmes are fully accredited and recognised by the MQA and Education Ministry.
“Before 2010, UniRazak BoE graduates were given posting in government schools by the Education Ministry. Some of the graduates were also posted to Mara Junior Science Colleges (MRSM) and polytechnics.
“The whole scenario changed in February 2010 when the MoE issued a memo, circulated to all state Education directors, that all school postings would only be given to graduates of IPGs and public higher learning institutes.
“This was bad news for our BoE graduates who completed their studies after 2010 but we did not keep quiet. Over the years, we tried to lobby for the Education Ministry to change the policy,” he told a press conference held at the college here yesterday.
Also present were Sidma College Sarawak chief executive officer Marzuki Umi and UniRazak Centre for External Programme (CEP) director Mohd Yaziz Mohd Isa.
Mornie pointed out that the college had sent representation through political parties to write to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Najib Tun Razak and Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin but to no avail.
He personally raised the issue with Muhyiddin in 2012 and last year and the college sent a delegation to meet up with Deputy Education Minister Datuk Mary Yap Kain Ching.
Mornie also did not agree with Second Education Minister Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh’s statement that the Education Ministry had to post teachers from the peninsula due to shortage in Sarawak.
“The situation is not true. They can tell us all the stories about Sabah and Sarawak not having teachers but we are producing teachers. We have so few but yet they do not want to take our teachers. Please remove or change the policy,” he said.
Sidma is the private higher learning institute which offers UniRazak and Unitar programmes in Sabah and Sarawak.
The institute currently has 3,000 students and about two thirds of them studying at its Kota Kinabalu branch and the rest in Kuching.
To date, Sidma has produced about 600 BoE graduates from Sarawak and 900 from Sabah.