PTA ‘Leads The Way’ With EGM

By Datin Noor Azimah Abdul Rahim, Chair of Parent Action Group for Education (PAGE)

KUALA LUMPUR. Pursuant to the decision to abolish the policy of PPSMI, concerned parents of Sekolah Kebangsaan Bukit Damansara (SKBD) sought a mandate from its Parent Teacher Association (PTA) to appeal to the Ministry of Education that SKBD be an exempted school to proceed with the current policy of the teaching of science and math in English (PPSMI).

The PTA of SKBD convened an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) today to pass the resolution as well as to propose to change the status of the school from Sekolah Kebangsaan (SK) to Sekolah Kebangsaan (SMI) – Science and Math in English.

It was made clear to the parents that they were not going against a government decision but instead was seeking status quo. Each student entitled a parent to have one vote. The votes were tallied and it was found that a staggering 97% of parents wanted to be given the option of PPSMI to be maintained in the school.

This option of allowing parents, teachers and students to choose illustrates the democracy that this country strongly adheres to. A choice of education must at all times be upheld to assure voters that democracy allows the freedom to choose.

The resolution will now be sent to the Prime Minister for consideration.

Observers from other PTAs were also present.

This move followed a brainstorming session with several PTAs of top schools in Kuala Lumpur and Petaling Jaya that wanted PPSMI to be maintained in their schools. It is hoped that the schools wanting to maintain PPSMI will take the cue from here and do likewise.

The constitution of the PTA allows the committee to convene an EGM, with seven days’ notice, to discuss a specific matter concerning the welfare of students in their school. Should the committee refuse to do so, parents comprising 20% of the number of students, through a signature petition, may compel the PTA to convene an EGM within 21 days of a written request.

The PTA provides the platform for parents to voice out their opinions on student welfare and must provide such an avenue should the need arise. It is a responsibility entrusted to all PTAs by their respective State Education Departments.