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Teachers’ union moots setting up think-tank for innovative teaching BY PETER BOON ON NOVEMBER 20, 2020, FRIDAY AT 12:09 AM
Posted on : 20 Nov 2020  Source of News: The Borneo Post
 

SIBU: Sarawak Teachers’ Union (STU) suggests to the Ministry of Education (MOE) to form a think-thank group to come up with innovative ways to deliver educational services to children particularly in Sarawak under the constraints of measures implemented to combat the spread of Covid-19 virus  .

STU president Macky Joseph in making this suggestion yesterday said the group should comprise stakeholders such as teachers’ unions, parent-teacher-associations (PTAs) as well as Village Security and Development Committee (JKKK), among others. He stressed that this was pivotal to help children from both urban and rural areas cope with their studies during this time.

“So, the MOE should form a ‘Think-Tank’ group to come up with innovative ways to deliver educational services to the children.

“Education for all and not making our children from both urban and rural areas be left behind (sic).

“We want Sarawakian children to enjoy education during the new normal of educating (the younger generation),” Macky said. He was commenting on The Borneo Post’s article – Teacher takes students, parents on two-hour jungle trek for internet, published yesterday (Nov 19).

The teacher took the initiative to lead a group of primary and secondary students from his village at Nanga Sumpa and nearby Nanga Jambu in Lubok Antu on a jungle trek in search for good internet coverage.

The one-way journey from the village to where they could finally hook up to the internet alone was about two hours and 30 minutes.

The teacher, Sambau Dugat, who is teaching at SMK Lubok Antu, said he had organised the trip on Sunday after seeing students from his village making the journey on their own very often recently. Macky said STU is urging relevant parties to make internet connectivity easily accessible throughout the state.

In this regard, STU hopes that MOE and state government look into this issue urgently as this is the new norm of education and life, he pointed out.

“Provide free access to internet through Wifi to enable pupils be connected wisely. Nowadays learning is very much dependent on internet connectivity.”

Macky said under the new norm, teachers are guided with the Home-based Learning or ‘Pengajaran dan Pembelajaran di Rumah Manual’ (PdPR Manual), given by the Education Department.

He pointed out that teaching and learning can be made available online,  offline or both.

For offline, he explained that students are given exercise from their textbooks, project, module and so on, whereas online, pupils who are able to be connected online could have GMeet session via googleclassroom, whatsApp and so on.

“Currently, teachers are coping with the home-based learning be it online or offline. After their online or offline lessons, they need to report to their school administration.

“At such, teachers are working with great energy to teach,” the STU president said.

“For teachers, who have their devices connected to the Internet, are said to be ‘glued’ on screen ensuring their pupils have their lesson on.

“Teachers then proceed with reporting and checking pupils’ exercises while guiding them throughout the process. That is what new norm is all about at the moment,” Macky said.