Up to teachers how to expose khat to students, says NUTP

PETALING JAYA: The National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP) says it is up to teachers to decide the best method to expose their students to the art of khat.

“Teachers have autonomy. They don’t teach according to the text books but syllabus. Now khat is part of the syllabus, how they teach it is up to them,” NUTP secretary-general Harry Tan told FMT.

He said it would not be professional for teachers not to teach khat when it is already part of the syllabus.

But he said teachers should also be allowed to decide what is best for the students.

“If a teacher is teaching a group of students who are struggling in their studies, and they feel there is a greater need to focus on other areas of the syllabus, they can choose to do so.

“All parties should give room to the teachers to make decisions using their best judgement.”

The education ministry today stood by its decision to introducing khat as part of the Year 4 Bahasa Melayu syllabus beginning next year.

But its minister Maszlee Malik said khat lessons would only be an activity and would take up only three pages of the BM textbook.

The move to introduce khat was met with protest from some, including Chinese and Tamil educationists, who said it would not help vernacular school students improve their Malay language skills.