KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 4 — The Education Ministry will announce its decision on the Dual Language Programme (DLP) involving the 2018 cohort this week, Datuk Chong Sin Woon has confirmed.
The deputy education minister told Malay Mail, however, that the announcement would only affect the 88 newly-selected schools participating in the programme for the first time this year.
“Existing schools offering DLP would not be affected by any decisions made by the ministry in regards to the programme.
“Details of DLP for the 88 new schools will be announced latest by Friday,” he said when contacted.
He advised concerned parents whose children are currently enrolled in the programme at their respective schools to not fret and wait for the announcement before making any speculations.
“Be calm, we will continue our DLP programme as a part of our effort to enhance our students’ proficiency in English,” he said.
Under the DLP, parents may opt for their children to be taught Science and Mathematics in English, so long as the government-aided schools have the resources to provide the service.
The media has reported that the programme, which provides the option to study Mathematics and Science in either Bahasa Malaysia or English, may not be available for Standard One, Standard Four, and Form One students this year.
A state education department had allegedly issued a statement saying that the DLP programme for the 2018 cohort has been postponed until a directive and further implementation guidelines are issued by the ministry.
The issue made headlines after a blogger, known as Cikgu Nurul, posted said statement and raised concerns about the fate of students currently in the DLP system.
The statement read: “For 1,170 primary and secondary schools (2016 and 2017 cohorts), the DLP implementation is continued for existing classes.
“For 45 SJKTs (2017 cohort), existing classes will continue and the opening of new classes is postponed
“For the 88 recently-approved schools for 2018, the opening of the class is postponed until circulars and guidelines are issued,” it said.
Malay Mail spoke to a school in the Klang Valley that confirmed the DLP programme for Year One, Year Four and Form One students for the year 2018 has not started at their school, but declined to comment further.
Meanwhile, a parent whose son in Form One at SMK Sultan Abdul Samad in Petaling Jaya, said the programme was ongoing at the school and it involves more than one class.
“The teachers there even encouraged more students to partake in the programme and said they will make the lesson more interesting for those without English-speaking background,” said the mother who wished to remain unnamed.
“I don’t know if the postponement is true. I would prefer if the government doesn’t go back against their decision.
“Most of the parents are keen to let their children take part in the programme as it would help to improve and enhance their language skills,” she said.