Ministry mulls placing SPM, STPM students in Sabah at hostels

PUTRAJAYA (Oct 20): The Ministry of Education (MoE) is considering sending Sabah students, sitting for examinations, whose schools have been closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic to hostels, said Senior Minister (Education) Dr Radzi Jidin (pictured).

This is because parents in Sabah want their children sitting for the Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM) and Sijil Tinggi Pelajaran Malaysia (STPM) examinations to undergo face-to-face learning sessions with teachers, he said.

“This follows a proposal from parents in the state,” he told a press conference here today after chairing an online meeting with the State Education Department and the District Education Office under the conditional movement control order (CMCO).

According to him, although students living in hostels in Sabah have been allowed to return to their homes following the implementation of the CMCO, but most parents wanted them to stay in the hostel because it was conducive and safer.

He said limited access to the internet as well as the lack of devices to conduct online learning were also a constraint factor for students, especially for those in rural and remote areas.

“However, teachers have done their best by providing modules for students who do not have internet facilities and devices, especially for those sitting for exams to enable them to revise at home,” he said.

Regarding the closure of schools, Radzi said the matter was made on the advice of the Ministry of Health (MoH) on the Covid-19 infection situation in an area.

“We will abide by the MoH’s instructions and for now, the closure of schools are in the red zone areas which have infections within the community and schools which have recorded positive Covid-19 cases,” he said

For now, he said, 2,601 schools registered with the MOE were temporarily closed due to Covid-19 involving 1.67 million students.

The government announced the enforcement of the CMCO in Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya effective from Oct 14-27. The CMCO was also implemented throughout Sabah from Oct 13-26.

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