Selangor executive councillor Ean Yong Hian Wah has accused the Education Ministry of banning government school headmasters and teachers from attending events not held by the ministry.
He was commenting on the absence of the staff of SJK(C) Tiong Nam Sungai Buaya at a ceremony to hand over a land gazette document to the school this morning.
The Selangor government had recently gazetted three acres of land for the Banting school.
"I was informed by the school’s Parent-Teacher Association (PIBG) that the District Education Department has instructed the headmaster and teacher to avoid attending events that are not organised by the Education Ministry.
"I did not see any teacher or headmaster when I handed over the gazette document to that school. Instead, the PIBG president received the document on behalf of the school.
Ean Yong emphasised that the state executive council had simply intended to pass the document to the school to “help its development”, and had not meant to “engage in political activity” through the handover ceremony.
“This (Kuala Langat District Education Department) is clearly unprofessional and abusing its power," Ean Yong told Malaysiakini when contacted.
Need to get approval
Meanwhile, the Kuala Langat District Education Department’s inquiries and complaints assistant Mohd Noor Leza Mansor confirmed that he had sent an email on the matter to the school's headmaster.
"As usual, we just wanted to remind the headmaster that they need to refer to the department before attending any events not held by the Education Ministry.
"The letter does not target today’s activities. It is standard procedure for the headmaster to get approval from the department before attending such events.
"Generally, we will ask a school’s PIBG to attend those kind of events, namely events held by DAP or PKR, because the PIBG is an NGO, to avoid any form of controversy," said Mohd Noor Leza.
He said that the email reminder was needed in case the Education Ministry questioned the department.
The school’s PIBG president Phan Ching Hock, who had received the document on behalf of the school, lamented the seeming politicisation of school activities.
"This is unreasonable. The Selangor government approved land for the school. Why can’t the headmaster and teachers attend this ceremony to welcome the Selangor exco?
"School should go beyond politics and (we should) not bring politics into school," said Phan when contacted.- Mkini