He is the typical average boy-next-door type, with stunning good looks, standing at 5'6" while she has the most remarkable smile that is filled with life which could turn Autumn instantly into Summer. Both are perfectly sculptured, still in their youths, ironically nothing is so typical about them. Being in the class that everybody loves to hate, they have the IQ of a 7 year old..what a luck for someone who looks so normal, so perfect!!
These are my students who are in the bottom class. They are intellectually challenged, not being able to read fluently or to even answer simple Mathematics questions yet, they will be facing the public examination which I suppose is a lot for them to handle. I suspect some of them have some type of learning disorder as they do show symptoms of being slow learners..really slow learners..I can't complete my syllabus in this class for how could I when 1/4 of the class cannot even read, 2 students have just completed their task to memorize the A,B,C and putting the letters in sequence(thanks to Iman's Smart Reader programme) and another 10's proficiency in English is comparative to a 6 year old; they don't even understand "How old are you?" while the remaining 3 are the ones I hope to pass the English paper, if the passing mark for the English PMR is just above 28.
It saddens me that they have to face the ordeal of sitting for an examination that is considered too high a level as compared to what they could remember or understand even. Where is the justice in our education system for such students?? I strongly believe that God had made men equal in some form. We have those who are the intellects; being engineers, doctors, lawyers, accountants, educators and the likes of that and he has also made men who are less intelligent but have soft skills that enable them to make a living through the talents they possess like sewing, carpentering, baking (moi??), modelling (moi?), and he has also made the lucky ones who are intellects and at the same time are also sophisticatedly talented.
Knowing this, I think the students I speak of fall into the talented category and they DO have talents. For instance, Syafiqah just loves make-up and wears them to school but carefully applies them which gives her radiance in the most natural way. If you are 20 cm away will you only notice her make-up! Zafwan, our Mat Rempit, modified his motor kapchai that would bring tears to Boon Siew's latest collection of motorcycles. If you look at his motorbike, you would not think that it is rideable; looking so wasted and out of age, but the moment the engine revvs, it can go from zero to hero.. He can fix a bike, knowing what works and what doesn't and this to come out from a boy who can't even read in English..
They deserve education, if not in academics, teaching them how to live can also be regarded as some form of education that would equip them with proper everyday skills to survive rather than coercing them to attend school day in and day out which is indeed futile as they do not gain much out of it. Why can't we use the taxpayers' money to revive our Vocational schools that was such an in-thing during my younger days, that benefitted most of us..mind you, instead of building stadiums that literally fall apart or having 2 Giant outlets being just 15 km away in the sedentary town of Kemaman? I've had friends attending these school taking up wiring, welding, grooming, fashion designing to name a few and they make quite a living for one who does not have paper qualification. They are their own bosses while me...I have nothing to shout about. Give these kids a break..sharpen their talents so it will become a weapon for them rather than moulding them to be something or to achieve something that is logically unattainable.
We are educators...so policy makers, please let us educate!!!
This is nothing but my plain ramblings for today based on the students I have. Nothing that has got to do with yours..