These days we sign contract for everything... even our country has its own social contract.
Anyway, kontrak latihan is something that schools over here have been implementing over the last few years. First glance, there is some good in this contract thingy. In this, teachers are supposed to list down the number of different types of exercises that they will give to the students for the whole year. Barring unforeseen circumstances, you are supposed to make sure you carry out your contract... means students get due exercises.
I've always wondered why they needed to come up with this contract thingy. One immediate reason I could think of was the paperwork will look good. Looking good is important. Then this came. It hit me that perhaps the people up there realize that many teachers don't give much exercises to the students. Now we know that students need to do exercises to consolidate what they've learned. But there is nothing tangible to show for.
Sometimes I get students who transfer in from other schools at various times. Often I would allow them to use the exercise books from their old schools. And more often than never, the number of exercises given are lacking. There can be 2 possible reasons. It could be due to the student's repeated absence from school or it could just be the teacher just didn't give enough work.
The need for Kontrak Latihan also tells me one thing though; that the Principals are not going from class to class and randomly checking exercise books. These days, I'd say Principals are rather lazy. They not only delegate their duties to the Senior Assistants and Senior Teachers (which they claim is due to their heavy workload) but fail to check the students' exercise books at random. Everything must be sent to their 'office-step'. Teachers do more walking than the bosses.
I can hardly remember my books being collected for 'pemantauan' when I was a student. Occasionally when we complain to the Principal that certain teachers were not teaching or giving us enough work, he'd go into the class and asked for that particular subject's exercise books at random. But that happened so rarely.
But these days, we have to do up Kontrak Latihan. And guess what... some teachers go to great lengths to come up with nice and detailed kontrak. Would be interesting to see the progress. Cos some of these teachers do really good glossy marketing of themselves... as a result they are awarded APC, mentioned for being hardworking, when in actual fact, hardly get the students to do much work. But still results continue to rise... either they're really good at making sure the students retain the little that they do or our Bolehland yardstick is flawed.
Malaysian Education system... Our politicians and some academicians say that we're progressing and improving. I wonder whether it's the cosmetics that we're seeing... like the many things that I see being dolled up at work.