Sarawak Govt Forms Special Unit to Coordinate Funds for Chinese Schools

KOTA SAMARAHAN: The Sarawak government has formed a special unit to coordinate and supervise monetary assistance given to Chinese schools in the state, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said today.

He said state Local Government and Housing Minister, Datuk Dr Sim Kui Hian would be heading the unit which would ensure that funds from the state government would be channelled appropriately to the Chinese schools.

“Before, there were a lot of applications from Chinese schools for the funds but there was no proper body coordinating these applications. It (the unit) will also help estimate how much annual budget to be allocated for the schools,” he told reporters after officiating at the opening of the new SJK Chung Hua Bako, here.

“Chinese schools in Sarawak now have multi-racial students, where from the total of about 60,000 students studying in Chinese schools in the state, 20,000 are Bumiputera.

“It is no longer Chinese school per say because it is more or less universal now. They also study Bahasa Malaysia, Mathematics, English and Science and non-Mandarin speaking students can learn Mandarin,” he added.

Abang Johari said changes in Chinese schools had to take place so as to enrich knowledge and it had to be multi-dimensional, while the interaction of students of various races would foster better understanding.

He said the state government was also going to build international schools, besides public schools, adding that the first international school would be launched this month.

“Our educational policy is to get the right attitude and training for Sarawakians to perform well for the future, and that is the basic,” he said.

According to him, this year the state government had given out RM17 million, of which RM8 million was for Chinese primary schools and RM9 million for Chinese middle schools.