Daily Express
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RM15.4m received for Sabah school repairs

Published on: Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Tawau: An allocation of RM15.4 million has been obtained from Federal to upgrade and repair schools damaged by fire or floods, as well as 640 schools that are in poor condition.

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman said of this amount, RM5million would be for repairing schools that were damaged by fire or floods recently.

"The Education Department has prepared the report and the school heads or principals have been asked to identify parts of their school that need to be repaired," he said.

Musa said the State Government would continue requesting for allocations from the Federal Government to repair other schools that were in need of maintenance.

"We need to take care of schools like we take care of our own homes because schools are where our children learn and me must ensure that the schools are safe for our children," he added.

As mentioned by Education Director, Datuk Jame Alip all school principals have been directed to find out the reason for the fires in their respective schools.

On teachers, Musa said the State government would always ensure that this group of professionals would continue to be supported and assisted in educating their students and producing useful human capital.

At the event, Sipitang-born Awang Mohdzar Abdul Samad, 74, and Aron @ Anifah Warso, 64, from Kampung Kalampunan, Keningau were recognised as Tokoh Guru Negeri Sabah 2014.

Awang thanked the department for acknowledging his contributions throughout his 34 years tenure.

"This is the most happiest day of my life. Thank you," said the father of three children who has served as a principal at Junior Secondary School Kiulu (now, known as SMK Tun Fuad Stephens) for four years and SMK Membakut for two years.

Awang went to Kent Tuaran Teaching College in 1960 before furthering his studies at the English Teaching Centre, North Sydney, Australia in 1963.

As a veteran in the teaching profession, he said the differences are very obvious in terms of infrastructure and teaching aids.

"In 1968, there were no roads and the pathways were muddy.

During that time, students were 11 to 18 years of age and came from out of town."

We even had to borrow SK Kiulu's building for the afternoon session.

"The situation now is different as we have access to roads and other infrastructure which enables students to have a proper education."

Aron also shared his experience from the day he started work until the day he retired.

"I started out as a temporary teacher which led me to the position of a properly trained teacher, permanent teacher, school principal, education officer and director of a teaching institute (Keningau campus) before retiring.

"When I retired, I thought that it was time for people to evaluate my contributions. If I failed to carry out my duties, I would have been sad my whole life."

Aron who was born at Kg Kalampunan (Kg Masjid Keningau) and went to Kent Tuaran's Teaching College (1974-75) said present day teachers are lucky compared to teachers especially in terms of furthering their studies.

"Be a teacher who teaches from the heart as a teacher's role surpasses everythingÉ teachers are able to bring out the human in people," he said.