KUALA LUMPUR: The Education Ministry is embarking on an exercise to transfer English language teachers to beef up their presence in places facing shortage.
"At present, Selangor and the Federal territory of Kuala Lumpur have a large number of English language teachers and some of them are not even teaching the language as they have declined to be transferred out," Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said in an interview.
Muhyiddin, who is also the education minister, said these teachers often cited family problems as an excuse to avoid transfers.
"Some of them claim they have bought houses in states where they are posted of they are married.
"Others say they have to take care of aged parents, but if we don't embark on the transfer exercise, the shortage will never be overcome.
"I have directed state Education Departments to transfer teachers within the same state.
"For instance, in Selangor, a teacher who is currently teaching in a school in Banting can be transferred to, say, a school in Klang, where the distance is only about 40km.
"They can appeal, but as a government servant, teachers are also liable to be transferred.
"We have not embarked on a transfer exercise for a long time. Like it or not, we have to start now."
Muhyiddin said there was currently a shortage of 8,373 teachers in both primary and secondary schools.
"However, we have employed temporary teachers to fill the shortage until new appointments are made.
"There are 4,653 vacancies for primary school teachers and another 3,720 for secondary school teachers."
There are currently 225,052 primary school teachers and 161,104 secondary school teachers in the service.
Muhyiddin said there were 1,500 preschools in the country, including those operating in longhouses in Sabah and Sarawak.
On sex education, he said Pendidikan Kesihatan Reproduktif dan Social was introduced to secondary school students in 1989 and primary schools in 1994.
From this year, it is for all schoolchildren from Year One to Form Five.
"It covers biological parts, socio-culture and psychology.
"This is a life-long education to allow better judgment.
"Lower primary pupils are taught, among others, the ability to say 'no' to indecent touches and the physical difference between boys and girls.
"Upper primary pupils will be exposed to adolescence, reproductive system, the risk of having sex before marriage, sexual diseases and the ability to say 'no' to cigarettes, drugs and alcohol."
Muhyiddin said the ministry had never used "sex education"' as a reference as it gave a negative connotation to people.
Muhyiddin, who recently chaired a meeting in preparation for the reopening of schools tomorrow, said there were 457,760 Year One pupils and 474,803 Form One students this year.
"We are taking action to ensure everything is in order."
Admin : Its sad to hear this but what to do. Its part of teachers' life anyway. But I believe things will can better anyhow. For affected teachers, hope you could still teach the best !