9-hour policy should never have existed, says Teachers’ Union
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 20 — The National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP) lauded the government’s decision to do away with the nine-hour workday for school teachers, saying it was unnecessary and should not have been implemented in the first place. Education Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced yesterday that the project had been discontinued.
The deputy prime minister said the decision was made in order to allow the government to evaluate a study conducted on the project which first began with 19 schools in Malacca. “There are a lot of reasons why the nine hour policy is not practical. Making it compulsory for a teacher to be in school for that long is not practical,” NUTP president Hashim Adnan told The Malaysian Insider today.
He urged the Education Ministry to consult workers’ unions in the future before deciding on policies affecting teaching as it could affect the government’s image if there was a sudden change of plans.
“We hope the Education Ministry will discuss matters with us first if they want to implement things like this in the future to avoid the government’s image being affected if policies like this are cancelled before they are actually implemented,” Adnan said. He added the latest announcement showed a weakness in the Education Ministry’s decision making process.
Adnan also said teachers actually worked more than nine hours a day on average if working on public holidays and during formal examinations were taken into account. “In most schools, there are not enough facilities provided for all teachers to be in school for nine hours,” Adnan added. The new policy would have been implemented January 2012 onwards in four states — Melaka, Sarawak, Pahang and Johor — and would have affected 5,000 teachers from primary and secondary institutions. The policy required morning school teachers to be in school from 7.30am until 4.30pm whereas afternoon school teachers were required to be on duty at 9.30am to 6.30pm.