SHAH ALAM: The Education Ministry will meet with its examination board and stakeholders within the week to discuss strengthening the compulsory use of English in SPM.

Its deputy education minister P. Kamalanathan said there had been engagements with them previously after its announcement in 2013.

He said during earlier discussions, there was a suggestion to have an oral assessment in English for Standard Five students.

“It is not a test, rather, it is a staggered move to gauge their ability to speak English,” he said.

He also hoped that once the finalisation has been made with both parties on the matter, it will be implemented either in 2017 or 2018.

The stakeholders includes among others the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas), Parent Action Group for Education (Page) and the media, he said.

He added a three-prong approach will be used once the discussion has been completed – strengthening the teachers’ pedagogical approach, focusing on the students’ ability to use the language and lastly, using English beyond the classrooms.

He was speaking to the press after launching the English Village programme here.

On the Air Pollution Index (API), he said that a circular has been sent to all schools and reminded the headmasters that should the reading reaches 200 then all classes must cease and replaced at another date.

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