The debate is on again: To revert Maths and Science to English or not to? How sad is that, after all these years, we are still stuck with the question: Going back and forth. Not making the slightest progress even at decision level.
And guess who suffers in the end? Who end up as the victims here? The students! Yet one wonders why we frown upon the Malaysian Education system. Indecisiveness rules, that’s why!
I remembered in 2002 when the Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir pushed for more subjects to be taught in English. The idea was adopted, and then we went back to Bahasa Malaysia, and back to English, and now, the deliberation is on again to have Maths and Science in Bahasa.
What’s happening to us? When China is importing English lecturers by the thousands from the UK, and many other countries are encouraging their people to pick up Mandarin, looking at how China is fast becoming a world economic power, here we are, still arguing about the same old issue, regressing to square one, yet again.
We really, really, really need to move on. We really do and We need to move forward.
A friend’s teacher was telling about how she was approached by a colleague who confided in her. The male secondary school teacher was approached by a student who asked him: “Sir, which part of out body is called the waist?” The boy pointed at his waist and thigh. The teacher, pointing to his own thigh, said that was his waist!
Of course the friend corrected him and thankfully, that teacher had the decency to go back to the student and admit to the student that he was wrong.
But this is it. This is where we are where English is concerned. Our understanding, our comprehension of the language, the way we pronounce words.. gone to the dogs!
Yes, we understand that it is difficult for some teachers to teach in English because they are poor too- again, no thanks to or education system. But we can’t take the easy way out here or we will surely lose out in the long run. Teachers who are weak in English can be trained. We can have extra classes to help them improve and hopefully master the language one day. And they in turn, can help their own children grasp the language. It’s all for their own good. For our own good! For the nation’s own good!
We need this to continue being competitive. Or do turn and run the other way and not bother with the finish line or promising rewards, whenever we see an obstacle ahead? Do we sacrifice yet another generation to bad English?
The current standard is, to say the least, atrocious, appalling, abominable! Awful, I’d say
To the authorities, please do what’s right for the country (Yes, to the authorities. Giving up? haha)
Please don’t let the current efforts that are already in place, go to waste!
Some perfect examples to the title ‘Are you speak Engris?’
1. In an office, a young employee picks up her phone when it rings and casually asks the person on the other line:’Is this an internal or outernal (external) call?’
2. Interview between an airline company and flight attendant wannabe.
Question: What do you know about flight safety procedures?
Answer: Passengers must leave their belongings during EJACULATION (evacuation).
3. One student is heard telling the other at a formal function: ‘Wah, today you look very extinguished (distinguished)’
4. At a modelling agency, a model asks her colleague… ‘Where you SHOT tomorrow? (Where is your shoot tomorrow)’
5. At a beauty pageant a contestant says: ‘I want to be success’
6. Form an essay by a student: ‘… I am dumbfolded (dumbfounded)’
7. Another essay by a student: ‘He suffer from low SELF OF STEAM (self-esteem)’
8. From a notice posted by a student: ‘No smoking ALOUD (allowed)’
9. From an essay by a student” ‘I pass all my testes. My grades should be hirer’
10. Written by a form four student in his essay: ‘Talking about the MISUED of religion’
11. From a letter written by a 17-year old: ‘I like your WORD (work), and what a cute CREATURE (picture) of you…’
12. Overheard at a department store: ‘I am so shy to go to the LIN-JE-Ree (lingerie) section..’
13. From an essay by a 15-year old who was asked if he would dress like a girl: ‘Never. Even if all the girls in the world EXTINCTED’
14. A student at school tells his teacher: ‘Sir, toilet sir. I got stomach cake’
15. From an assignment submitted by a university student: ‘Women can use the DIAGRAM to prvent from getting pregnant’
16. From a student: ‘The reason why he’s not interested in woman is because he is a QUAIL (queer)’
17. On a trup abroad, a reporter wakes up just after dawn, looks out the window and exclaims: ‘Wah, cantiknya sunset!’
18. Spelling mistakes at local food outlets: ;’Sphaghetthi (spaghetti)’ ‘Suit and sawa chicken (Sweet and sour chicken)’, ‘Stake (steak)’
19. A part time worker at a concert hall needs to stamp the wrists of patrons foing out for a break. She says: ‘Excuse me sir, can I chop you hand?’
20. From a secondary student: ‘He told me he hit his head on his forehead’
21. From a local fil delegate at an international festival: ‘She’s an actress. SHE-MOTHER also actress’
22. From a 15-year old looking after his pet: ‘My dog had cut his hair last week. He became a shaven body because he is thin’
23. A very famous local singer was asked by a stewardess, ‘How would you like your coffee?’ The singer, very earnestly replied, ‘In a cup please’
24. Toilets out of Order. Please use the Ice-Rink.
25. All of You Listen to mee, Don’t disturb here, will call policae catch you, Don’t come to my bungalow house, Understand, O.K? I hate all of you.
How atrocious is an International Language made? Or perhaps I ask, how more disgrace shall we bring to ourselves and our nation? Enough of debates. Many often asks, ‘Why the countries around grows faster?’ Have we ever realised that language itself plays such an important role in the lives of many? Singapore has proven to be one of the fastest growing country. At least people doesn’t ask if they live in jungles and if they have eggs and potatoes right?
We made ourselves who we are. Don’t bother looking east, west, north or south. What’s the point if our own basic is not strong? Language is such a basic. Are we just afraid that English will overshadow our national language? Is it the ego in the ministers? I’d rather you sacrifice your ego for the sake of the country.
I don’t deny my English is not good enough. I often complains that to my mum too. But hey, at least my English is way better than many around me? I am not bragging but I am thankful to be in a school where English was an important language. The exposure I got is so valuable. People have to realise. Authorities have to realise. We need to wake up from this.
Maths and Science is just 2 subjects out of the uncountable subjects that we offer in secondary school. What is wrong with just having it English? Apparently, people can get 20 A1s, if they are really brilliant, this change shouldn’t affect them. Are we not changing just because the students will get lower marks? Oh, that thinking is so traditional.
I am not as fortunate as those now who have their primary school Maths and Science in English. Nevertheless, it will turn unfortunate to them if it is revert back. People are leaving Malaysia because of it’s Education System. We need a revamp. We need a change. And I think English is the way to go.
Reference (and some sources) : from Malaysian Today