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Hopes that decision on the teaching and learning of science and math in English can be made next year: Malaysia’s PM

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad delivers his speech at the 22nd Annual General Meeting of the National Smallholders Farming Association in Ampang October 17, 2019. — Picture by Firdaus Latif. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

LANGKAWI, Feb 15, 2020, Bernama. Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said he hoped a decision on whether the teaching and learning of Science and Mathematics in English (PPSMI) can be reintroduced or otherwise can be made next year, Malay Mail reported.

Dr Mahathir, who is also Acting Education Minister, said the government had set up a sub-committee to evaluate the matter and would prepare a proposal paper for Cabinet deliberation.

Following that, he said the Cabinet would determine whether PPSMI will be reintroduced or decide to maintain teaching of the two subjects in the national language.

“Before this, I had told the officers (in the Education Ministry) not to make an announcement (to the public on reintroduction of PPSMI), but somehow it leaked out and the public was told I had made a decision.

“I cannot make the decision, it must be made by the Cabinet. So, now were a preparing a paper for consideration by the Cabinet as to whether we will have PPSMI back or maintain the teaching and learning of science and mathematics in the national language,” he told the media when asked about the matter here today.

Earlier, the prime minister had attended a medical outreach programme organised by Langkawi Youth Power Club, National Heart Institute and Briged Sukarelawan Media Prima-NSTP in Sungai Itau here.

Prior to this, Dr Mahathir had said that a Cabinet committee had been formed to study the matter due to objections from the public on reintroduction of PPSMI.

He said the decision on whether PPSMI will be reintroduced will follow the majority opinion of the Cabinet.

The policy was introduced in 2003 when Dr Mahathir served as Malaysia’s fourth prime minister (1981-2003) but was reversed in 2012.

Dr Mahathir, 94, is currently in office as Malaysia’s 7th prime minister.

Dr Mahathir is a strong proponent of PPSMI, believing that it is crucial for Malaysians to remain competitive in a fast-changing world.

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