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Friday, 22 January 2010

The professional trip II

After the first professional trip to Miri last year, today marked our second with 53 delegates to our neighbouring country, Limbang, Sarawak. The bus left at 7.30am and reached the Limbang Resident Office at around 9am. There we were welcomed by the education officers and briefed on the development of the state of Limbang which included its races, religions, educational development, infrastructure as well as local economic productions. Here then I began to feel at awe with Limbang's "hidden", shall I say, precious information.

A welcoming speech by the officers of Limbang Resident Office
A speech by Cikgu Ahmad bin Haji Hussin, the group leader of the trip
Me and Bibi, a colleague of mine

The mikes were then passed on to the invited counselors of the home country who shared with us the history and journey of counseling worlds in the state. There, every counselor has to take 500 students to supervise. So it's a 1:500 fixed condition. The speech also included the division of local schools into clusters, similar to ours. However, the schools in these clusters actually have to "fight" to get into certain clusters with the aim to build schools' potential to their best performance. Hence, clusters label schools in its very own group in terms of their administrations and development of students' educational achievements.

The briefing was then taken over by the Parents-Teachers Association representatives. Throughout this part, the Brunei delegates were very impressed with the active involvement of parents into the development of education in their children's schools. They are actively involved in schools' administrations with the aim to build schools' potential achieving qualitative performances in education, hence getting into the best clusters. This also include beautifying and decorating the schools (especially creating reading rooms, reading huts in school compunds and reading corners in kindergarten classrooms), handling students' discipline problems, providing incentives to students with best results in exams, co-curricular activities, money raising for individual schools, and many many more. I personally think Brunei schools CAN become much much better if teachers and parents have this kind of connection with each other like the ones achieved in Limbang..

The two PTA representatives at the Limbang Resident Office

Our next destinations were to SMK Agama Limbang and SMK Kubong. The first school is a religious school, somewhat similar to Mahat Islam and Arabic School that we have here in Brunei. The school is big, clean and also has parents as its backbones. The school even gives incentives to students with best results in exams like RM500 for PMR students getting 9A, RM1000 with students getting 11A in SPM and so forth. We respect the school for having to raise funds from the public to do such as this. I respect how they work so hard for the children. We then visited the school's Reading Room, Anti Drugs Room and Counseling Room. We left the school at around 5:30pm. We reached SMK Kubong at 6pm.

At the briefing at SMK Agama Limbang
Signing off the guests' certs
The school's counselor
A few of the gifts from the school, which are also a towel with the school logo on it
Anti Drugs Room
Two of the murals painted by students and parents of the school
Refreshment before leaving

SMK Kubong achieved 100% passes in PMR. The school administration shared with us their tips, which are very much similar to ours, in most schools I bet like the Parents-Teachers Meet, extra classes and such. One particular action the school takes is having to separate the students into 3 classes: the good, average and low performances 2 months before the big exam. So the students are re-streamed according to their educational achievements in individual subject. The school also carries out a system where students are told to achieve their minimum grades in exams to help them aim the best results they could actually achieved. The outcome? The 100% passes in PMR. It's very very impressive indeed! I didn't take any pictures in this school as it was already dark and my camera was out of battery pfft!!

We left Limbang province at around 7pm. Along the ride, a teacher played an horror movie: 4Phobia. Having very dark street that we drove along, the journey back was not very comforting. As we watched the fourth series, which was thankfully a funny one, I drove home alone without even a glinch of fear. We got back to Brunei at around 9pm and I reached home just before 10pm.

Read here for brief info of the visit by the Borneo Bulletin.

All I can say now is, the trip this time was really fruitful. I never thought that there are treasures in that small state of Malaysia though I've been there many times. I'm glad I joined the trip and the next one will be in March to Acheh Indonesia, and in June to Labuan.

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I AM AN ARIES: The Daredevil (huh??)

Energetic (yea, in many ways)

Adventurous and spontaneous (definitely)

Confident and enthusiastic (yup!)

Fun (hmm ... I should ask my friends that!)

Loves a challenge (100%)

EXTREMELY impatient (well, I hate waiting. Does that count??)

Sometimes selfish (am I??)

Short fuse; easily angered (hell yeah!)

Lively, passionate and sharp wit (hmm ... No comment!)

Outgoing (for sure!)

Lose interest quickly - easily bored (most of the time)

Egostical (in some ways; my baby says "in MANY ways" LOL!!)

Courageous and assertive (I agree!)

Tends to be physical and athletic (hmm ... Naah!!)

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My engagement: 01.01.10

My engagement: 01.01.10
Suzila Ahmad

The engagement ring :)

A cake from him

For him

With my dad & Sharul's :)

With my mum and his :)

With two of my closest girlfriends: Azean & Yanti :)
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