Selamat Hari Guru (Happy Teacher’s Day)

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Having survived the excitement of the KPEC project celebration day in Ipoh on Monday (see previous entry) we were asked to participate with a stand at the annual Teachers Day in Ipoh on Thursday. An illustrious event attended by 4,500 teachers from across the state of Perak, the Teachers Day provides an occasion to celebrate the things that are good about teachers and teaching in the schools here – and provides the opportunity for the State officials to bestow honours on a select group of teachers who have contributed in significant ways to the profession. Teachers Day is taken very seriously over here, as this report and this blog illustrate.

It was a privilege to be a part of this event – and to see the way in which both students and peers participated in giving special recognition to the six or so teachers singled out for this year’s awards. The announcement of each recipient was preceded by the showing of specially prepared video clip that protrayed the significance of that particular teacher’s achievements – all very inspiring.

The experience left me reflecting on just how much more we all could do to focus on the good, the effective and the inspirational efforts of teachers in our schools!

Of course, the KPEC stand received a lot of attention – featuring in pride of place near the entrance to the whole event – and providing the Chief Minister with the opportunity to use skype to video conference with a teacher in New Zealand (as did some of the students who were there).

This brings to an end the pilot programme we have been running in Perak over the past three months. I’ll be spending most of next week in Kuala Lumpur with other members of the iNZed group, talking with Malaysian Ministry of Education officials about ways in which the programme may be extended and rolled out to other schools.

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