Solve Teacher Absenteeism in Rural Schools
17 April 2000
Kuala Lumpur, Mon.-
Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) today called on the
Ministry of Education to solve the perennial
problem of absenteeism among teachers in rural
schools in order to improve the standard of
education in Sabah.
deputy president, Dr Maximus Ongkili said teacher
absenteeism was rampant in Sabah's rural schools
and regretted that no action had been taken
against the teachers involved.
Ongkili was participating in the debate at the
committee stage on the Supplementary Supply
Bill 1999 (No. 4) allocation for the Ministry
of Education in parliament this morning.
have received numerous reports from parents
of students in rural schools that many teachers
including principals are absent from classes
for weeks in a given month.
explanation given was that they had to attend
meetings in the towns but the problem continues
for months especially in such schools as SK
Magandai, SK Gana and SK Tagibang in Tandek.
Why can't the ministry take action against such
teachers?" he asked.
that the problem occurred in other districts,
the Bandau member of parliament urged the government
to solve the issue once and for all in order
to improve the conditions of rural schools.
upgrading of school facilities, Ongkili requested
the Ministry to specify the criteria used in
upgrading primary schools to secondary status,
arguing that in the past such upgrading was
questionable in terms of location, population
concentration and basic infrastructure.
cited the specific case of SK Ongkilan in Tandek
which had been upgraded to a secondary school
(SMK), "regarded by many as wrongly located
as the bulk of the student population come from
SM Mosolog and SK Talantang and therefore better
deserve the upgrading."
reminded the government to continue upgrading
school facilities in the rural areas, stressing
that while town schools were being upgraded
in status remote schools were often left behind
in terms of financial priorities.