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Curriculum Studies

Madam Fazlinah Said

Nadhrah Nurul Jannah bt Amir Hamzah


Speaker's note
Good afternoon, welcome to the Eduvita Forum. My name is Nadhrah and I
will be the moderator for todays discussion. The issue for today will be: Why
do we need Pro-ELT?
First and foremost, I would like to enlighten the audience on the Pro-ELT
program. What is PRO-ELT?
Students in Malaysia face tremendous challenges in attaining English
proficiency, and this is reflected in both national assessments like UPSR and
SPM as well as international English examinations.
Therefore, one of the priorities for the Ministry of Education is to implement
initiatives to help develop the language and teaching skills of English
language teachers across Malaysia. The Professional Up-skilling of English
Language Teachers or Pro-ELT project targets five thousand teachers across
all the 14 states of Malaysia.
The teachers are required to attend a six-hour training once a week until the
completion of a 480-hour training module.
Based on our topic, we have invited special panelists for discussion. Firstly, I
would like to introduce Datuk Wan Nur Ayuni, an officer from Education
Ministry, Professor Farhana Idayu, a pro-ELT trainer and a professor teaching
English communication subject at Universiti Malaya and Madam Nurjalilah,
an English language teacher at SK Taman Gembira with 15 years experience
in teaching. For your information, she is also an alumni of the first cohort of
the PRO-ELT programme. And I myself will be representing the headmaster of
SK Taman Gembira.
Thank you for joining us in this show. Now, moving on to the segment.

Moderator to Ayuni: Datuk Ayuni, according to Deputy Education Minister,


Datuk Mary Yap in 2013, the objective of (Pro-ELT) is to enhance proficiency
as well as pedagogic competence. So does it imply that attending the Pro-ELT
course stigmatises the teachers as being incompetent and thus the need for
the up-skilling course?
Thank you Datuk for the comprehensive explanation.
Moderator to Farhana: Professor, could you explain in brief about the
content of the program, and to what extent it could bring changes in
teaching and learning of English in Malaysia?

Curriculum Studies
Madam Fazlinah Said

Thank you Professor for the explanation. We now have a clear insight on the
aim of Pro-ELT to bring innovation to the current T&L style for English to
make it more creative and meaningful.
Moderator to Jalilah : Next we move to our representative for teacher. We
would be excited to hear from the trainee who undergoes the PRO-ELT
training. Maybe Miss Jalilah can share with us about your experience?
Moderator as a headmaster: Thank you Miss Jalilah. As the headmaster of
SK Taman Gembira, I have few other teachers who are joining Pro-ELT, and I
have received many feedbacks especially regarding their problems like longhours of training as well as workload. What I can say here is as administrator,
I will try my best to understand their situations and helping them to manage
their works at school. On the other hand, even though Madam Jalilah has to
undergo this program despite her 15 years experience of teaching English, I
will never downgrade her. In fact, my respect for her never reduced even an
ounce. She has set a great standard of her own. Furthermore this program
can be regarded an opportunity for English teachers to get exposure, new
knowledge about T&L, and this could beneficial for professional
development. I really hope that the teachers will not feel demoralised and we
can bring up the issues to higher authority for necessary actions.
Moderator to Farhana: Back to Professor Farhana. There is a letter in The
Star's Opinion Section dated 25 March 2014 who stated that the time and
energy spent attending the Pro-ELT course will have earned the teacher a
masters degree, instead of a mere improvement of one band, say from B2 to
C1, if he chooses to upgrade himself in any local university. How do you
respond with this statement?
Thank you professor. it is undeniable that the objective of the PRO-ELT is
noble, that is to gauge the standard of English among English teachers in the
country, therefore the trainers for this program are highly proficient and
expertises.
Moderator to Jalilah: Next, Madam Jalilah, After almost two years of
implementation of Pro-ELT, the pros and cons of the program should be
analysed. Miss Jalilah, would like to suggest any ideas for improvements for
this program?
Moderator to Ayuni: Well, from what Madam Jalilah mentioned just now,
would you like to give any comments Datuk Ayuni?
Moderator: Thank you Datuk for the constructive comments. Now that we
are coming to the end of the discussion, it can be concluded that the
intention of the ministry to up-skill the English teachers should be viewed
positively, especially now that the English language will become a
compulsory subject in the SPM come 2016, as outlined in the Education
Blueprint 2013-2025.

Curriculum Studies
Madam Fazlinah Said

However, there are some concerns that should be addressed, so that the
implementation of PRO-ELT will no longer regarded as a 'burden' to TESL
teachers. It also hoped that the improvements will make teachers become
more convinced on the necessity of PRO-ELT for their professional
development.
Thank you to all the panelists, I am happy that we managed to have a fruitful
discussion today. Thank you to everyone for your listening. Til we meet again
next time, good evening.