Political Commitment from Government and Public is Called for— Full Force Solution for Jawi Script Learning Dispute Expected  

Joint Statement Released by Dong Zong and Jiao Zong

April 15, 2021

Political Commitment from Government and Public is Called for—

Full Force Solution for Jawi Script Learning Dispute Expected

 

Dong Jiao Zong hereby urges both the government and private sectors to show political commitment and courage by putting their feet on the ground to solve the Jawi script dispute in full force, rather than pointing fingers at each other while staging a war of words. The fact being, 98 percent of the vernacular Chinese primary schools disagree with the Jawi script learning; the will of the parents is telling thus the MOE needs to respond as anticipated by putting the measure aside. On the other hand, government and non-government politicians are obliged to jointly push the ruling government to abandon this public opinion defiling implementation.

The recent allegation of Dong Jiao Zong’s indecisiveness in its stance on the Jawi script learning was one of unfair and unfounded which defies the truth and is misleading. As a matter of fact, Dong Jiao Zong has been consistent on its ground and never opposed to the Jawi calligraphy learning but merely disagrees with the learning approach implemented by the MOE which in actual fact defies our country’s multicultural inherence. We reckon, on the contrary, the government needs to refer to the existing Grade Five Bahasa Melayu coursebook in its introduction of calligraphies of all ethnic groups to primary students, including Chinese, Tamil, Jawi and various indigenous groups from east Malaysia as the approach is more viable, appropriate and had been approved by the Deputy Education Minister Mah Hang Soon. In the meantime, we insist that the school boards of vernacular schools should be included in decision making on the said matter; therefore, we hope the government will put the Jawi script learning implementation aside as well as convening relevant Chinese and Tamil stakeholders, let alone education representatives from east Malaysia to mull over the besetting matter.

Dong Jiao Zong has been consistent in its ground to attentively supervise educational implementation from the former Pakatan Harapan government to the present Perikatan Nasional government. Last July, the Education Minister Radzi Jidin had consented to review the Jawi script learning in vernacular schools in a parliament statement; to our regret, six months has since passed yet no follow-up is seen. Worse still, the government did not seem to hear the disagreeing voice from both the Chinese and Tamil vernacular schools as it instead posted Jawi script learning questionnaire to parents asking for decision which again generates disappointments and worries.

Witnessing the MOE’s all mouths in the matter, we sincerely hope both the government and non-government politicians are ready to be accountable as well as seeing the case from the perspective of education professionalism to jointly solve the Jawi script learning dispute. Nonetheless, Dong Jiao Zong will continue to supervise the MOE’s education implementation attentively. By the same token, Dong Jiao Zong appreciates comments and examination from all walks of life.

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