BESUT, 10 June 2009: The Malaysian Malay Language Education Association (PPBMM) fully supports the government’s proposal to make English a compulsory SPM pass subject.
Its president, Assoc Prof Dr Hashim Othman, said this was in line with the association’s resolutions in March to raise language proficiency at all levels of education through various strategies and teaching and learning methods.
He said it was fitting to learn English for communication purpose, but not as a language for knowledge as was being done through the policy of teaching and learning science and mathematics in English.
“By making it compulsory to pass English, it will indirectly encourage or motivate students to learn the language,” he told Bernama today.
He said the resolution to make an English pass compulsory was made at the PPBMM executive meeting in March and a copy of the resolution was faxed to then Education Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein. It was also faxed to Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamad Khaled Nordin, and then Foreign Minister and PPBMM patron, Datuk Seri Dr Rais Yatim.
Hashim said the association was confident that Malay Malaysian students in rural areas would not face any problem in getting their SPM certificate once the proposal was carried out.
He said the difficulty that rural students had in learning English could be overcome with revised and improved teaching and learning techniques.
Hashim suggested that the funds previously allocated for implementing the policy of using English in teaching maths and science be used to improve teaching and learning English in rural areas.
He hoped that with this move, the policy would be scrapped in schools and instead focus be given to improving students’ overall command of English.