Synopsis: Pendidikan dalam Bahasa Inggeris = English-medium education

Apakah yang patut kita lakukan berkenaan pendidikan dalam Bahasa Inggeris?

= What should we do about English-medium education?

Sepanjang bulan Jun, kita telah menerokai persoalan ini melalui (a) perbincangan tentang soalan-soalan yang patut dipertimbangkan dalam post Pengenalan, (b) petikan komen daripada pembaca-pembaca dalam post Apa Kata, dan (c) temu bual bersama Samuel Isaiah, seorang guru Bahasa Inggeris yang telah mengajar pelajar Orang Asli sejak tahun 2012, dalam post Q&A. Minggu ini, kami menghuraikan perbincangan tentang penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris sebagai bahasa pengantar ini.

= Throughout June, we have explored this question in (a) a discussion of questions that should be considered, in our Pengenalan post, (b) a selection of comments from our readers in our Apa Kata post, and (c) an interview with Samuel Isaiah, an English teacher who has served Orang Asli pupils since 2012, in our Q&A post. This week, we summarise this discussion about English-medium education.


1. Mempelajari Bahasa Inggeris memang penting untuk anak-anak Malaysia.
= It’s important for Malaysian children to become proficient in English.

As a teacher in an Orang Asli school, my children’s proficiency in the English language not only improves their confidence and self-belief, it also gives them the opportunity to have a voice. A voice that a global audience can appreciate.

For this reason, I believe that the mastery of the English Language enhances cultural heritage, exchange and pride.

—Samuel Isaiah, when he was interviewed in our Q&A post

We need the English language as a skill to be competitive in the job market, and can learn it separately as a language but concepts are universal – they don’t have languages so not necessary to learn it in English.

—Shashi, commenting on the Pengenalan post (on dialogpendidikan.com)

2. Walau bagaimanapun, terdapat kebimbangan bahawa penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris sebagai bahasa pengantar untuk Sains dan Matematik akan menjejaskan pembelajaran sesetengah murid.
= However, there are concerns that English-medium instruction for Science and Maths may hurt some students’ learning.

Saya amat tidak bersetuju, mengajar matematik dalam bahasa inggeris. Ini amat membebankan terutamanya untuk murid luar bandar. Matematik adlh subjek yg agk struggle utk di ajar di luar bandar. Nak memahamkn & menarik minat mereka untk bljr matematik dalam bahasa melayu pun sukar, apatah lagi klu dalam bahasa inggeris. Lagi sukar proses pdpc nya. & keadaan ini, akn mnjdkn mereka lagi ‘jauh’ dgn matematik. …

—Siti Khatijah Manaf, memberi komen pada post Apa Kata (di Facebook)

English subject is already difficult for our students. What’s more if English is taught in Science and Maths? I’m afraid it will turn out to be another English class during Sci&Maths.

—El Henry Yapolai, on the Pengenalan (on Facebook)

3. Namun, pembaca Dialog Pendidikan mengemukakan pelbagai cadangan lain untuk membina kemahiran berbahasa Inggeris. Contohnya, Bahasa Inggeris boleh digunakan sebagai pengantar untuk mata pelajaran bukan teras.
= Still, Dialog Pendidikan readers proposed many other options for developing students’ English skills. For example, English can be used as the medium of instruction for non-core subjects.

anak2 kami bukan bahan ujikaji. saya sokong pandangan cikgu m fadli salleh untuk gunakan english dalam subject yg lebih fun iaitu pendidikan seni dan pendidikan jasmani. BUKAN matapelajaran seperti matematik dan sains. … banyak lagi aktiviti yang boleh dilakukan untuk menggalakkan anak anak untuk menggunakan bahasa Inggeris TANPA menjejaskan pendidikan teras mereka.

—Rosnida A Kadir, komen pada Apa Kata (Facebook)

Utk subjek seni dan pendidikan jasmani mmg sesuatu yg seronok bila diajar dlm bahasa inggeris sebab inilah masanya anak2 diberi pwluang dan ruang utk bergembira dgn aktiviti yg tidak membebankan otak. Utk matematik dan sains biarlah diajar dlm bahasa melayu kerana lebih mudah utk cikgu dan anak2 bereksperimen dan memahami

—Suriasue Suekhairul, komen pada Apa Kata (Facebook)

4. Selain daripada Bahasa Inggeris dan Bahasa Melayu, bahasa ibunda lain juga dapat ditawarkan sebagai pengantar, terutamanya pada peringkat awal pembelajaran.
= Besides English and Malay, other mother tongues could be offered as languages of instruction, especially at earlier stages of learning.

… it’s really crucial to have (1) BM as our national, common language and (2) for children to have the option of learning Math, Science etc in their mother tongue while they are still in primary school (the existing SK, SJK system) so that they can form their conceptual structures of these areas of study in an optimal manner. Once those conceptual foundations are properly formed, they will need support to make the transition into a second-language environment.

—Ngee Derk, on the Pengenalan (Facebook)

… For me, what we need to move towards is mother tongue education – we do practice it by vernacular education but there are other ways. Mother tongue education is education based on whatever language you are most comfortable in. For those for whom the main language of instruction isn’t their first language, it is a struggle.

—Mei Yee, on the Pengenalan (dialogpendidikan.com)

5. Salah satu lagi pendekatan ialah menggunakan Bahasa Inggeris sebagai bahasa pengantar hanya di sekolah.
= Another possibility is using English as the medium of instruction only in secondary school.

I’m a 95 liner, means that i was taught in Malay for science and maths during primary school and those subjects change to english when i enter secondary school. For me the transition from malay to english was quite good. Although,i do had some difficulty but i managed to catch up with the subjects.

I think the implementation of malay language during primary school is good and change it to english for secondary school. We can’t say english is not important bcuz once the students further their studies in university the language will be in english. It is better for them to understand it earlier rather than they have to struggle to translate everything they learn in malay during school years to english when they enter higher level education. …

—Syera Kamarulzaman, on the Apa Kata (Facebook)

6. Kita patut berfikiran terbuka terhadap pelbagai alternatif lain.
= We should keep our minds open to other possibilities as well.

assalam, pada pandangan sy, kpm wujudkan hari bahasa inggeris satu malaysia bagi setiap mggu shj sbg penghayatan & perkasakan bahasa inggeris. hari bahasa inggeris bukan shj diterapkan di sekolah. tetapi segala urusan pejabat kerajaan mahupun swasta.. jika boleh urus niaga di kedai pun walau di kedai makan kedai runcit guna bhs iggeris utk sehari shj. …

—Zarul Shafiq, komen pada Apa Kata (Facebook)

… I think we should do away with the age-group approach of teaching English, teaching the same thing in Form 1, then 2, then 3, etc. In fact you have the occasional Form 2 student whose English proficiency may be better than half the students in Form 5, and so on. Teachers have the impossible job of trying to teach all these learners in the same group, which ends up wasting all their time when the material, pitched ‘at the middle’, is too hard for the less proficient students to follow and too easy for the proficient students, etc. It’s a terribly inefficient system.

Better to evaluate the students as they come in, group them according to their CEFR levels from A1 (beginner) to C1 (advanced) and run classes on a semester basis, with ‘exit proficiency tests’ that allow students to go up a level if they’re learning very quickly. …

—Ngee Derk, on the Pengenalan (Facebook)

7. Apa pun pendekatan yang dipilih, kita perlu mengetengahkan suara dan keperluan kanak-kanak.
= Whatever approach is chosen, it is important to put children’s voices and needs first.

My good friend used to say, “When it comes to education, everyone will have an opinion.” …. And everyone will say that the main focus is on the children. True. But the children’s voices remain muted. How many times do we turn to the students for opinions? We often measure the impacts of a programme based on students’ performance in examinations or some kinds of tests, or based on what their parents say, or based on the school’s achievement in co-curricular activities, or even based on evaluation of teachers’ competence. … But I think we need to go deeper. We need to listen to students voices more. They need to be at the table with the policy makers. If it’s true that we’re doing this for them, then this is what we should do.

—Cynthia C. James, in her blog post responding to the Pengenalan

… Again, to the ministers out there, our kids ARE NOT your lab specimens.

—Rosnida A Kadir, komen pada Apa Kata (Facebook)


Terima kasih kerana mengikuti perbincangan bulan ini tentang penggunaan Bahasa Inggeris sebagai bahasa pengantar di sekolah! Sertai kami bulan depan dalam perbincangan baru: “Pendidikan pra-university: untuk apa dan untuk siapa?” Dan sila lawati kami di  Facebook. 🙂

= Thank you for taking part in this month’s discussion on English-medium education! Join us next month, when we will discuss: “What (and whom) is pre-university education for?” And don’t forget to visit us on Facebook. 🙂

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