KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 15 — The Parent Action Group for Education Malaysia (Page) today said it has submitted a memorandum to 31 ministers asking for their support to expand the Dual Language Programme (DLP) to more schools.
Page said that while there were 1,600 DLP schools in Malaysia, the majority — 1,200 — were in Sarawak alone.
In the memorandum from 35 groups, they also demanded that the education minister reverse her previous directive for participating schools to include at least one non-DLP class, saying this was against the guidelines.
“We want her to stop insisting to have a non-DLP class in full DLP schools,” Page chairman Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim said at a news conference here today.
“It’s not in the guidelines, we are fine with the guidelines, we want them to follow the guidelines, and not add on any restrictions.”
Noor Azimah today reiterated her group’s criticism over the assessment of six-year-olds for their English and Bahasa Melayu proficiency to determine their eligibility for the DLP across their entire primary years, saying it was “cruel” to exclude those who do not qualify at such a young age.
She also said Page still has not been able to meet with Fadhlina over the DLP despite trying since last year.
The group urged the minister to respect parents’ decisions on DLP and to be fair to students enrolled in the programme, telling her to end the uncertainty over the scheme at all levels.
In November last year, Fadhlina directed participating schools to introduce at least one non-DLP class.
The minister expanded on this a month later by saying there were students in DLP schools who lacked basic proficiency in Bahasa Melayu and their mother tongue.