THE deputy prime minister wants to engage the people to find a lasting solution to problems in the education system, including improving proficiency in English.
Everybody knows the problem and the solution. Ironically, the solution becomes the problem. The problem seeks a solution and more problems arise. As the quip goes, "Don't trouble trouble as trouble will trouble you!"
Since those in power don't want to be troubled, they choose not to offer the solution. They know the solution but the solution will trouble them. So, it is best that some problems are left without solutions.
Parents are worried because their children have a problem with English. They also know the solution but the solution causes problems. More money is needed for tuition. But there is no guarantee that this will not cause another problem.
Research shows that reading improves writing skills, too. It also enhances creativity, imagination and critical thinking.
Teachers know the problem and the solution, for they themselves are the problem as they are weak in English. Teachers with good English have a problem with students who are weak in English, for it is all Greek to the students.
Students with good English have problems in schools. They seek solutions by trying to speak English but few teachers can speak well with them. And very few of their friends speak good English.
In the end, English becomes a problem as these friends will say speaking English is unpatriotic. So, how do we improve English?
By Hassan Talib, Gombak, Selango
Source: New Straits Times Letters to the Editor 22 March 2012