Monday, April 05, 2010

A ridiculous ruling

This letter I wrote to The Star was published yesterday (Sunday 4 April 2010).

You can read the letter online here.

While some kindys implemented the new ruling at the beginning of the school year, Joe's kindy has graciously delayed the implementation till 3 weeks ago, after the March mid-term break.

Needless to say, Joe has been late for school everyday. But much to my surprise, he is not the last to arrive. There are children who arrive as late as 8.45 am when school starts at 8am!

We put the children to bed at 9plus and lights are off by 9.30pm. They roll around trying to sleep and finally doze off between 10 - 10.30pm. Yup... they can roll like a cement mixer for up to an hour before falling asleep! Nine hours later, waking up at 7am is still torture.

If I had any thoughts of sending Joy to kindy next year (when she is 3 yrs old), they have now been banished to the ends of the earth! Even though class starts at 8.30am for 3 and 4-year-olds, they would still have to go with the older sibling who starts at 8am. It's too much torture for a child so young. I pity the December baby in that position. Imagine if Joy had been born merely 3 weeks earlier, she would be in the 3-year-old class NOW! Thank God she's a January baby.

Malaysia's Education System is already beyond crap. And now they have nothing better to do than to torture pre-schoolers so that they have to wake up at the crack of dawn and rush to school without a decent breakfast. I really want to give the official who came up with this ruling a huge piece of my mind because he doesn't seem to have a working one of his own.


  1. I left a comment on your FB. I think Victoria faces the same problem, she is a late riser. I strongly disagree that kids as young as 4-5 years should be made to wake very early. It destroys their childhood! And I have not even talked about the pressure on the parents! OK for me the education ministry rule that kindies give 4 hours a day but schools must be regulated on the times. I think the following is fair:

    4 years - 9.00 - 12.00
    5 years - 8.30 - 12.30
    6 years - 8.00 - 1.00

    By the time they go to std 1 they will have adjusted. Of course my suggestion may not be practical to some parents with 2 kids just a year apart but it is a starting point to talk to the school. I think we both know which one, eh?

  2. Thanks Uncle for your comment. But talking to the school won't change anything because this ruling is from the MinEd. The school has its hands tied.

    Plus they have to standardize dismissal time otherwise it's chaos. I suppose a smaller school could have more flexibility but JC's size doesn't permit this.

    In my opinion 8.30 - 12 is more than sufficient. It should be fun. Not exhausting and draining. Children in developed countries don't study such long hours and they are no less intelligent.

  3. pris if you were at the orientation day for the kindy this year, you would have heard my strong opinion on this. I told the principal that I prefer to stick with 830am, my second choice is 815am and I will not agree with 8am simply because of reasons you already stated and more. I believe a child should not leave home with an empty stomach. I believe children this young should have enough sleep and play. But I was told that we parents need to embrace change with a positive attitude and mind, and that EVENTUALLY our kids have to wake up early for std 1 anyway, so why not start now, so I was told.
    They even told me not to force bfast for the kid in the morning if they have no mood to yet.

    But the principal has also revealed that the teachers have their working hours, and therefore the kids must start early, so the teachers don't have to work late. Well, there you go.

    Vic has to go to bed by 9am and normally doesns't shut eye till 10pm or plus, like Joe. In the morning, the mother aka MOI has to wake up first to wake her, and daddy. Now hubby gets to work earlier than the aunties in his office!

    So if Joe is late, you have to call the school to open the doors?

  4. ahh...I see. yeah, I wasn't at the orientation.
    Std 1 is TWO years away! They'll adjust then.

    They have a 30-minute grace period means you can come as late as 8.30am. But they don't shut their doors till 9am because the 3 and 4 year olds have grace period till then. So well, can actually go that late :-)

  5. Irene, maybe we should start a petition and hound the Education Ministry.....educate them a bit!

  6. Actually I have no issue with the 4hours so long as they are not stressing the kids more with more work. More play or creative arts would be nice. I think it's the starting time that pisses me off. 830am-1230am is the best!

  7. I wasn't at the orientation too but I was told by another parent that parents would get to vote for 8.00, 8.15 or 8.30am - which wasn't the case as JC just decided on 8.00am and we had to abide by it. If dismissal is a problem, the 3- and 4-year old can start at 9am and everyone dismisses at 12.30.

    I am perpetually late too, though only by 5mins or so. But even then, YY often comes home and tells me that "Teacher says must come to school BEFORE 8am!" SIGH!!!