Progress Report on the first group of 51 teachers teaching in Sabah with Humana Child Aid Society under the agreement between the Government of Malaysia and the Government of Indonesia about education for the children of Indonesian plantation workers: School girl in plantation with baby sister The first group of teachers arrived to Sabah in two groups of 25 teachers on the 29. August and 26 teachers on the 16. September 2006. Both groups were given introduction courses at Balung Eco Resort, Tawau, in which officials from the Ministry of Education, Putrajaya and the Ministry of Education, Jakarta took an important part. They were soon after that attached to the 51 Humana Learning Centres operated mainly in plantation areas along the East Coast of Sabah. 15 in Lahad Datu and Tawau Districts, 17 in Kinabatangan District and 19 in Sandakan District. The participating plantation companies have all provided a basic accommodation for the teachers as well as other assistance. These include: IOI Corporation, Asiatic Development Berhad, Hap Seng Consolidated Berhad, Kwantas Corporation, Borneo Samudera Sdn.Bhd., Melangking Oil Palm Plantation Sdn. Bhd. Teck Guan Plantations, Kebun Rimau Sdn. Bhd., Nam Hing Estate and Pontian United Plantations The teachers have since September 2006 been teaching the more than 4000 children, presently enrolled in the 60 Humana Learning Centres under our society alongside with our Malaysian, Philippine and “old” Indonesian teachers. Given the great distance between our centres and that is therefore not possible to provide daily supervision, the teachers’ ability to work independently and with a good self motivation is crucial. Our new Indonesian teachers have been introduced to basic rules for a teacher in our society, which among others are: 1) That a teacher must always provide a good moral example for the children. No drinking of Alcohol or other intoxicants, no smoking in presence of children and to respect the country of residence and of course always to obey Malaysian Law. 2) That the teacher must always be present and on time during school days, and that any legal absence must be announced to the Estate Manager as well as to Humana Management as early as possible to avoid that children are left without supervision. 3) That no physical punishment is allowed, and disciplinary problems must be discussed with the parents. 4) That the teacher must provide good and interesting teaching with the use of visual aids and songs and other remedies, which will help the childrens’ understanding. For this purpose we are giving monthly courses to our teachers, so that we can see continuous improvement. Generally our impression of the Indonesian teachers is positive after the first 4 months of the project. They are all young men and women in their 20s and they are from various parts of Indonesia, including Java, Sulawesi, Kalimantan and NTT (Timor, Flores and surrounding islands) 18 are female and 33 male teachers. They have various educational backgrounds, where some have proper teachers education, while some have other higher education, but with some experience in education. We will point out, that a fluency in English will be an advantage for the next coming group. Only some from the first group really master English language. English is not only an important subject, but also widely used in plantations, and good knowledge therefore will help the students to have chances of a job as staff or office workers in oil palm plantations or mills, when they finish their studies. We have had to stress the special obligations for a teacher in our society, where there will often be only one or two teachers attached to one centre, that basically the teacher must always be there during schooldays, and necessary absence must be properly informed. This is so much more important, as children left to themselves in a plantation with heavy vehicles would be a very dangerous situation. We have never had accidents occurring because of teachers neglect until now, but this is something we are very serious about, as unlike other schools, there maybe no substitute around. First 4 Months of Teaching: Our curriculum in the Humana Learning Centres has been generally based on Malaysian curriculum, and it is headed by a retired Malaysian Government School Principal, Mr. Riduan Haji Donald, who is our society’s principal. When the first teachers arrived, it was made clear from the government to government meetings, that some subjects special to Indonesia could be included, especially in social studies subject, Kajian Tempatan, which we have included in our schedule. This has been instructed to the teachers to effectuate this. But as the program started only slightly more than one month ahead of our yearly evaluation tests of the students, implementation has some places been a bit slow, as the teachers tried not to interrupt preparations for the tests. We have stressed to all teachers that we need to see this subject been fully introduced by now. There is no doubt that it has helped to raise the level of teaching to have the Indonesian teachers at our centres. Often the conditions before have been to teach up to 5 levels at one time, which is of course not really practicable. Therefore the Indonesian teachers have been filling out an important function as co-teachers with our present teachers. Majority of the Indonesian teachers have been filling out this position excellently. New Centres Opened: The announcing of the arrival of Indonesian teachers and of the agreement made between the two governments has had a very positive effect. Many Indonesian parents have voiced their happiness over this. Not only on the parents in the plantations, who have looked very much forward to receiving the new teachers, but also on some plantation companies, which have taken the opportunity to put up new centres in plantations with no educational facilities. We have so far opened 9 new centres in 2006, and a number are scheduled to be opened beginning of 2007. The Indonesian teachers have been taking part in opening the new centres. Readiness for next group: The plan was to open 29 new centres during 2007, where the scheduled 58 new teachers should teach. We have at this time contact with a number of plantation companies, who are interested to open learning centres: New Proposed Centers: IOI: 6 centres PBB Plantations: 4 centres Tradewinds 4 centres Asiatic: 2 Centres IJM Plantations: 1 Center Borneo Samudra: 2 centers Still lacking will be about 10 centres, mainly due to lack of response from KLK Taiko, which was initially proposed to reopen their 16 centres. We still hope for a positive response from their side. I expect that we will be able to open the proposed 29 centres during 2007, but that it will take place gradually, which will also give a chance to some of the teachers to get some basic training at our existing centres before starting on their own. Our basic plan is to let a pair of one Indonesian teacher from the first group and one new teacher open a centre together, so that at least one teacher with some experience will be at each centre. The experienced teacher will then be replaced by another of the new teachers at his/her place. In this way we secure the continuation of the program. Proposal for a Boarding Humana Learning Centre providing secondary education in building provided by Balung Eco Resort for the children, who reach Primary 6 level. The possibility to continue education after primary 6 level is quite limited for the children of the plantation workers. A number of the children are sent back to Indonesia or Philippines to further their studies in the care of relatives there. But many bright children will stay back with their parents without prospects of furthering their studies. We propose to open a secondary boarding learning centre for about 200 students, who finish their primary 6 levels. We have in Balung Eco Resort (Owned by Datuk Harris) been allowed to use a well equipped building with space for 200 boarders as the present primary level centre. This building could house 200 boarders in dormitory style accommodation and with good classrooms. We have already a number of teachers with experience from secondary level, and we would have no problem, running such a centre, as long as the necessary funding was in place. We would ask for funding from the Indonesian Government, as well as from the plantation companies and other corporate sponsors, and also a contribution from the parents themselves. This project could go ahead pending the approval from the Malaysian Ministry of Education and the Education Department in Sabah. Challenges Ahead: For our society, the challenges for the coming years are plenty. We have to keep up with a doubling number of centres, where deliveries of books and school materials and supervision will be essential for success. Our operating expenses which amount to only RM 300 per child per year including salaries for our “old” teachers, will be covered by the participating plantations and sponsors from corporate and private side. Also planned increase in administrative and supervision staff will be covered by these contributions, as long as we can find willing sponsors. But necessary investments in vehicles and motorbikes will be more than we can cover from our operations budget and promised sponsorships. We are therefore looking for funding for two 4WD Pickups (2 x RM 85,000) and for twelve motorbikes (12 X RM 5000). This would upgrade our possibilities to serve all the teachers in an appropriate way. Proposal to link UNICEF Malaysia to project: For such expenses, and also for a long term sustainability for the project, we have proposed to include UNICEF Malaysia as a supporting party to the project in the same way as they are supporting projects carried out by MERCY Malaysia. Yours Sincerely Torben Venning Acting Director Humana Child Aid Society Sabah P.O. Box 61850 91127 Lahad Datu Tel: 089-866857/019-8084402 Fax: 089-862402/03-21784113 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.borneochildaid.org Picture Report from First Months of Project of Indonesian Teachers posted with Humana/ Borneo Child Aid Society in Sabah. Children and teachers at Morisem 3 Estate Guru Rahmawati and Guru Evangeline In Pontian Malacca Estate – Guru Ayu and Guru Edith School Transport in Pintasan 2 Guru Weni with fellow Philippine teacher during sports in Pegagau Indonesian Teachers perform during sports in Maywin 2 And in Melangking Oil Palm Plantation Visit by Delegations from the Vice Presidents Office and from Several Ministries in Jakarta. Drs. H M Yusuf Asry, Deputy Secretary to the Vice president of Indonesia and Torben Venning of Humana With Consul Dr Azhari Kasim (right) Consul Iskandar Abdullah (second fr. Left) and other Officers In Ladang Madai. Guru Febriani and Rosmi Kandare With Prof. Fyuad Abdul Hamled and Drs Yusuf Asry At Our Office in Lahad Datu (Guru Adrianus Yakup, Consul Iskandar Abdullah, Drs Yusuf Asry Attache Imran Hanafi, Fr. Pudjo Hardianto, Ms. Eva Alfanta, Consul Dr. Azhari Kasim At Cantawan Estate New and Old Teachers: Guru Christian and Guru Haerul Graduations Consul Adie from Consulate General in Kota Kinabalu visiting Tomanggong Graduations With Guru Unari Guru Sumiaty Guru Damianus Guru Budhiharto giving a welcome speech Indonesian and Philippine teachers in Tomanggong Sakilan Graduates Guru Mostofa giving a speech Graduation in Luangmanis/Terusan Baru IOI Corporation Guru Dewi Guru Eka and Adie Graduation Ceremony in IOI Sandakan. Transport of children. Hopeful Children Guru Murnilawati Guru Adranus in Maywin 2 Guru Andri in Maywin 2 Student graduating from Primary 6 Guru Andri in Maywin2 Guru Mohd Yani at centre in Asiatic Mewah 1 Graduations in Asiatic Mewah. Oil Mill Manager Mr. Teo Plantation Life Visit to Taliwas Estate, Lahad Datu – Guru Sahar Seminar in Lahad Datu by Ministry of Education; Jakarta and Visit by Parliament Members from Jakarta Uplifting speeches and Visit to Baturong 3 Plantation Consul of Indonesia and Parliament members Member of parliament for West Kalimantan in talks with Guru Fitnawati Mr. Suharno, Prof. Dr. M. Noor Rochmann and Torben Venning New Centres Opened September to December 2006: New Centre in Sekong Estate New Centre in Cantawan. Guru Lillith and Yvette New Center in Asia 2 Estate with Guru Mohd Sabandi and Reynaldo Jr. Guru Didik and Guru Abnon have opened Laukin Estate Learnin g Centre. Guru Puji and Guru Reynaldo Tagediad opened Balung Eco Resort. Proposed Site of Secondary Boarding School. Guru Francisca with Guru Grace and Students Buka Puasa with Consul Iskandar Prayer led by Mohd Yani Acrobatics Tug of War Tired ladies And Gentlemen Evening Program with Indonesian and Malaysian National Anthems. Flowers for the singer – Guru Elpha and Mohd Shaban Guru Adie and Guru Eka Performing Indonesian Song End of a wonderful School Year.
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