KOTA KINABALU, SABAH – Chinese educationists in Sabah can look forward to better financial support, policies and environment for Chinese schools under a Gabungan Sabah (GS)-led Sabah government with its autonomous education policy under their control and not under the Federal government, said Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku Deputy President Kong Fui Seng.
“Under the BN government, despite its hyped-up so-called contributions, Chinese education has been marginalized and suffered. Each year, the Chinese schools, students and parents are stressed out to raise funds because of the failure of the Federal and Sabah governments in failing to fund Chinese education.
“For instance, for the Tshung Tsin School hostel, the Sabah government contributed only RM250,000.00 which is not even 5% of the RM6.0 million construction costs.
“For the KK High School buiilding, the Federal and Sabah governments contributed only RM200,000 each towards the total construction costs of RM2,897,028. This only amounted to only 6.9% while the balance 86.2% was from public donations,” he said on Tuesday.
He was commenting on the GS Manifesto namely on the taking back of education under State control.
“Education is and should be the heart and soul and the future of Sabah. Chinese schools and the Chinese and business communities should not accept token hand-outs if they are serious in providing better education and raising education standards in Sabah.
“Chinese, mission and vernacular schools should not be burdened with fund raising efforts but concentrate on providing the best education to our young in Sabah.
“As a result of the Federal and Sabah governments’ double-standards, students have been made to suffer tremendously instead of being allowed to focus and excel in their studies,” Kong said.
Their parents and the Chinese community, he said have been put under great stress to raise funds annually for their Chinese schools.
The donations, even if raised, could have utilized to advance their education rather than be spent on what should have been paid by both the governments, he added.
“If GS in government, it will ensure that education to be under State control and ensure that federal funds will be adequately provided for Chinese education as well as for mission and other vernacular schools in Sabah. This is to be consistent with the government’s responsibility for education just like the national schools.
“The GS government will also ensure that sufficient funding will be set aside to fund the schools so that parents would not be burdened with school payments at the beginning of the year.
“The focus and priority for education in Sabah will be providing the best education, skills training and people development and empowerment that will advance and progress Sabah. This will include creative education starting from the young pre-school and all types of education institutions and skills training,” he said.
Kong assured that no Sabahans will be left behind in education and Chinese education will not be neglected or made less important by a GS-led Sabah government.
“Chinese education will stand to benefit and focus on creating towering Sabahans,” he said.