Article 1: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. Article 3: Everyone has the rights to life, liberty and security of person. Article 5: No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Article 26(1): Everyone has the right to education. Higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.


We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.
Thomas Jefferson, United States Declaration of Independence.

More than 200 years after Thomas Jefferson's Declaration of Independence, these truths cease to be self-evident at least to some of the teachers in Malaysia.

Let us hope that one day there will be no more oppression and bullying in schools where the biggest bullies of all are none other than the school principals themselves.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010


My school normally gave out the prestasi forms for the teachers to fill in by the middle of the year but this year we only got it after the retirement of Puan M, the afternoon supervisor. (Puan M retired on the 1st of October 2010). Is it because the principal doesn't want Puan M to evaluate the teachers because Puan M cannot be manipulated by her? Puan M is actually a very nice person who is forever kind to the teachers. And Puan M is the one who should evaluate the teachers who are teaching in the afternoon since she is the afternoon supervisor and she is with us all the time. Puan F (the PK 1) is not so kind. Whatever happens, she will side the principal. If the principal is nice to you, she will talk to you nicely and vice versa. And she is certainly NOT the right person to evaluate the afternoon session teachers. By 1.40 p.m. she would have already gone back home. How does she know what the afternoon session teachers are doing? I suspect that there is something fishy going on here. Oh my God, what is happening to the schools in Malaysia? Just imagine the two of them giving marks to the teachers and these are the marks that will determine whether the teachers can have their promotion and/or increment or not the following year. What will happen to the teachers whom they do not like? Not too fair, isn't it?

Throughout my teaching career, I have never bothered much about the borang prestasi. I just signed my part and handed in the forms every year without asking how many marks I got. I just couldn't be bothered what marks I would get because I trusted my former principals. But this year is different (If you want to know why, just google "Oppression in a Secondary School in Kuala Lumpur). After being sent to the gallows for asking the principal to certify my certs because I wanted to apply to do a PhD, I know that the principal would not give me too many marks this year. Although my application was rejected because there was no supervisor to supervise my field of research, the damage cannot be undone. What should I do now? Should I sign the form or not? If I sign, I am sure that she will give me very low marks. If I don't, what kind of action will she take against me? Either way, I am condemned to hell. But first of all, is it legal to ask someone to sign something she doesn't know? Signing the prestasi form is like putting my signature on a piece of blank paper. I will never know the consequences of it until something bad happens to me and by that time it's already too late. The principal can give me very low marks and write anything she wants about me on the prestasi form and it is assumed that I have accepted the marks and all her comments even though I am forced to sign the form beforehand.

My friend, Edelweiss 56, (the teacher who wrote the article "Severely Bullied Teacher" in the Mystar Blog - just google this title and you will find her article) told me that her promotion from DG41 to DG 48 in the year 2001 was delayed for two years because her principal and PK1 gave her very low marks. When she checked her marks at the ministry she found out that she was given 79.64 marks that year, still short of 0.36 marks for her promotion. She called NUTP and was told that she should see the Timbalan Pengarah over this matter since her school did not follow procedure i.e. the teachers should see the marks first before they sign. When she went to the Education Ministry to plead for justice in the hope that the 0.36 marks would be given to her, the Timbalan Pengarah told her that he couldn't do anything because she has already signed the forms and no changes could be made even though her school did not follow procedure. When Edelweiss56 asked to be transferred to another school immediately, the Timbalan Pengarah told her to wait till the end of the year and see what marks she would get. She waited till the end of the year and this time she was given only 63 marks because she did something she shouldn't do i.e. called NUTP and sought justice from the Timbalan Pengarah. She went to see the Timbalan Pengarah again and he told her the same old story i.e. since she had signed the prestasi form beforehand she had to accept her fate. The question is, are the marks valid if she was forced to sign the form before the principal wrote the marks and her bad comments on it? I am not sure about Malaysian law but does this mean that in Malaysia it is legal to force someone to sign on a piece of blank paper and then be held responsible for whatever outcome that flows from it? Malaysia is a civilized country and surely this kind of uncivilized thing shouldn't be allowed to happen here without our Prime Minister's knowledge.

Edelweiss just called me and told me about the teacher in Kuantan who sued her principal for damages amounting to RM228000 for denying her the right to her yearly increments by giving her very low marks. I truly sympathize with this teacher and I really salute her for her courage to seek justice. And tonight I am writing this blog article to seek justice not only for myself but also for all those teachers who are suffering in silence but dare not voice out their grievances.
Edelweiss56 is one of them. She lost more than RM10000 because her promotion was delayed for two years and if she didn't tell me about it no one would know how much she suffered. Here I would like to take the oppportunity to make her plight known to the whole world.

Edelweiss56 is a very dedicated teacher. After she was transfered to a new school, her new principal gave 85 marks the following year. In the same year she was also given the anugerah perkhidmatan cemerlang. The same teacher doing the same amount of work but how come she got low marks for one year and high marks the following year plus the anugerah perkhidmatan cemerlang? The answer is very obvious. If the principal likes her then she can get high marks for her prestasi but if the principal doesn't like her she is sure to get very low marks. Thus we can see how biased, prejudiced and unfair the principals can be when giving marks to the teachers. Can we trust them to evaluate the teachers?

Let's see what marks the principal will give me this year. I have been doing my work in the same way all these years. In fact this year I am given more work than the previous years. This year, I am the coordinator for English in the afternoon, I have to do relief timetable for those teachers who are absent, and since the temporary English teacher left on 1st June I have to take over another extra class. With the retirement of Puan M, I have yet to mark the English papers of another extra class for the coming final exam. If the marks that the principal and the PK1 give me are less than what I got last year, the reason for it is very obvious.

Principals who are themselves not much better than the teachers or may even be worse than them are given the authority to chastise the teachers they do not like. And what rights do these principals have? Teachers who know how to bodek and spy for the principals are given very high marks whilst those who only want to make an honest living are sent to the gallows. Everyone knows that it's no use working hard nowadays. One must learn to work smart and to work smart means that one has to be extremely selfish, cruel and cunning. No, this kind of shameful thing shouldn't be allowed to happen in Malaysia. Malaysia, a country where peace and justice is dear to all ... Let there be justice for all. It's time for the borang penilaian prestasi to be thrown into the garbage bin.

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