Reconsider plan for English teachers to sit on MUTE, ministry urged

KUALA LUMPUR: The Ministry of Education has been asked to reconsider its directive that English teachers must sit for the Malaysian University English Test (MUET).

The directive, issued by Director General of Education Datuk Dr. Amin Senin in a circular dated April 14, was aimed at reviewing the level of English proficiency of teachers in accordance with the requirements set out in the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025.

The general secretary of the National Union of the Teaching Profession (NUTP), Harry Tan Huat Hock, said in a statement here that the move would only increase the burden on teachers.

He said the ministry, as part of its efforts to further strengthen English proficiency, should look at key issues plaguing schools implicated in the shortage of English teachers.

“English option teachers were asked to enroll in MUET when they already had an English teaching qualification, such as Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL).

“In the meantime, for non-optional English teachers (those who are not trained in the field and have to teach for lack of teachers), they certainly cannot reach the level set because English is not their domain,” he said.

According to the circular, all English teachers must also be at the minimum proficiency level C1 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages ​​(CEFR).

They are also required to sit on MUTE by the end of December this year and it is self-funded.

Meanwhile, Tan said that besides teaching, English teachers also have to do various activities such as Highly Immersive Program (HIP) and Professional Learning Community (PLC) programs, compared to teachers teaching other subjects.

“These teachers must also train students for competitions and other activities such as debate, drama and choir,” he said. — Bernama