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3.1 INTRODUCTION
The aims of educational assistance and support programmes is to prepare students mentally and physically, to excel in the field of curricular and co-curricular activities and to decrease the dropout rate among students from low income families. Among the programmes available are the School Boarding Programme, the Textbook Loan Scheme, the School Health Programme, the Nutrition and the Health Programme which include the Supplementary Food Programme and the School Milk Programme, the Counsellinbg and Guidance Programme, the Scholarship Programme, the Education Assistance for Students With Special Needs, the Poor Students’ Trust Fund and the Tution Aid Scheme. The objectives of the Ministry of Education (MOE) in establishing the Education Assistance and Support Programmes are: a. To provide programmes and schemes that assist students to prepare for schooling; b. c. To minimise the dropout rate; To improve academic excellence especially among students from low income families; d. To ensure equal education opportunities for all especially among students from low income families; and; e. To ensure the management of education support programmes is efficient and effective.

3.2 THE TEXTBOOK LOAN SCHEME (TBLS)
The Textbook Loan Scheme (TBLS) was implemented nationalwide since 1975. The scheme cover all levels of education from the primary to the upper secondary education in goverment schools and goverment aided schools. Begining 2008, the MOE has made a provision to give free textbooks to every student reagrdless of socioeconomic status. The Textbook Divison has introduced innovations in teaching and learning materials by producing CD-ROM alongside the textbooks produced. The CD-ROMs are also equipped with electronic notebook known as e-journal as a communication tool. Beside ensuring the textbook packages produced are of high quality and concurrent with the curriculum, efforts have also been made to ensure the suitability for the target groups and able to achieve the teaching and learning objectives.

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3.3 THE POOR STUDENTS’ TRUST FUND (PSTF)
The MOE has set up the Poor Students Trust Fund under the Section 10 of the Finance Procedure Act 1957. This is in line with the implementation of the Compulsory Education Policy in 2003 (Section 29A Education Act 1996 [Act 550]). The PSTF provide financial aid specifically to poor Malaysian children in government and government –aided schools regardless of race and religion. This is accordance with the Compulsory Education policy to improve students’ academic excellence.

3.4 THE TUITION AID SCHEME (TAS)
The Tuition Aid Scheme (TAS) is an educational intervention programme targeted for poor students with low acedemic achievement. The aim of TAS is to provide extra guidance or tuition which is structured for poor students whose achievement is low in the subjects of Malay Language, English Language, Science and Mathematics. The extra classes provided are an effort to improve students’ academic achivement.

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3.5 THE INTEGRATED SCHOOL HEALTH PROGRAMME (ISHP)
The Integrated School Health Programme (ISHP) is implemented with the assistance of the Ministry Health. The aim of this programme is to provide various heatlh services to students in primary and secondary schools. This noble effort is based on the rationale:

     

To coordinate the variuos health programmes into an integrated programmes. To create a flexible, innovative and creative system to fulfil the school needs. To create a health programme which can foster a sense of belonging and commitment among the school community. To create an integrated health programme which has an impact that can be evaluated. To foster understanding and cooperation between the school and local community in overcoming health issues. To encourage good health practices through planned and direct efforts.

The services provided under the ISHP include dental and medical treatment, prevention and control of contagious diseases and free medical kit to schools. The implementation of Enhancing Students’ Health Programme in school has increase collaboration between the MOE and the Ministry of Health. This programme aims to nurture positive habits and attitude among students in everday life towards a healthy and quality lifestyle.

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3.6 THE SUPPLEMENTARY FOOD PROGRAMME
The aim of Supplementary Food Programme (SFP) is to increase the nutrional value of food consumed by pupils to ensure they receive a well-balanced diet for their physical growth, mental health and general well-being. It is hoped that pupils are more focused on the teaching and learning process through this prgramme.

3.7 THE SCHOOL MILK PROGRAMME (SMP)
The School Milk Programme (SMP) runs simultaneously with the Supplementary Food Scheme. The programme is targeted for poor students whose family income is below the poverty level. Beside, to ensure students receive a well-balanced diet in school, the programme is also aimed at increasing the quality of health and nutritional value of food for primary students for better physical growth, mental health and general well-being.

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3.8 THE 3K PROGRAMME AESTHETICS)

(SAFETY,

HEALTH

AND

The 3K Programme started in 1991 with the aim to strengthen the school system focusing on school safety, health and aesthetic. The programme is preceived as capable in making school realise the significance of aesthetics in education which contributes to a conducive teaching and learning environment. In addition, projects under this programme have enabled schools to foster close relationship with Parent-Teacher Associations and local communities.

3.9 THE SAFE SCHOOL PROGRAMME (SSP)
Safe school is defined as a school environment which is free from internal and external threats and where the school community feels a sense of security. In a safe school, each individual should be free from race and gender discrimination, have positive attitude towards others, value individual differences, act and be fair, be cooperative and helpful, practise good behaviour and morality, avoid violent behaviour, abhor physical, mental and emotional abuse, and report all negative incidents.

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It is an aspiration of the MOE that the Safe School concept is implemented in all schools in the country which will create learning institutions that are free from physical, mental and emotional interferences.

3.10 THE SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMME
The Scholarship Division is responsible for coordinating the MOE schorship programmes. The division manages the scholarship fund for selected students at primary, secondary and selected tertiary level. The MOE also provides scholarships to qualified teachers who wish to further their studies at bachelor, master’s and doctorate level in local or foreign universities.

Types of Scholarship
The MOE is sensitive to the problems of less fortunate students who have potentials to excel academically. In view of this, scholarships are granted to students with excellent academic achievement from poor family background with an income below RM1000.00 per month. At primary and secondary levels, the students are granted with Federal Minor Scholarship and University Preparatory Class Scholarship. The scholarship programmes include:

    

The Poor Students’ Trust Fund The Federal Minor Scholarship and University Preparatory Class Scholarship The Execellent Student Scholarship The Federal Teaching Scholarship (Bachelor Degree), and The B. Ed. TESL Scholarship.

Scholarships are also granted to teachers and education officers in the MOE. The scholarship programmes include:

      

The Special Programme Enabling Non-garduate Teachers to Attain Degrees (PKPG & PPG); The Federal Training Awards for Education Officers (master and doctorate level); The Post-graduate Programme (unpaid leave); The Programme Enabling School Heads to Attain Degress (full time); The Programme Enabling Non-graduate Teachers of International Languages to Attain Degrees (French and German); The Distance Learning Programme with Open University, Malaysia; The Graduate Diploma Programme in Drug Abuse;
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  

The Special Teaching Certificate Course (KSPK); The National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPOH); and The Pre-Service Programmes.

3.11 THE COUNSELLING AND GUIDANCE PROGRAMME
The aim of the Counselling and Guidance Programme is to expand the counselling service and career guidance for the benefits of students. The MOE has made a provision that every primary and secondary school must set up a Counselliing and Guidance Unit headed by a full-time counselor. The Counselling and Guidance services in schools are primarily concerned with safeguarding students’ welfare, proving counselling and career guidance and organising motivational talks and courses. Some of the programmes organised are short courses for peer counsellors, leadership camps, course to develop social skills and selfreliance. Invitational talks on career and higher education opportunities are among important services rendered to school leavers.

3.12 THE ENERGENCY PREPAREDNESS PROGRAMME (EPP)
The aims of the Emergency Preparedness Programme (EPP) is to equip primary school teachers with knowledge on how to prevail over natural disasters such as flood, tsunami, earthquakes, haze and landslides. The objectives of the programme are : a. to prepare teachers with knowledge and skills on how to face natural disaster through workshops and educational visits; and b. to foster cooperation between teachers and NGOs to produce School Emergency Preparedness Natural Disaster Manual and School Emergency Preparedness Action Plan. The activities under the programme were:

   

a workshop for Natural Disasters Awareness; a workshop for teh writing of the School Emergency Preparedness Natural Disaster Manual; educational visits to Adelaide and Melbourne, Australia; and a course on Disaster Prevention in Schools in Kobe, Japan (in-service training in cooperation with JICA, Japan)

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3.13 THE SCHOOL BOARDING PROGRAMME
School hostels are built to provide convenient accommodation for students especially to does who live in rural and remote areas and whose family earn less than RM 1000 per month. The aim is to bridge the gap of quality education between students who live in the rural and urban areas.

3.14 THE ASSISTANCE PROGRAMME FOR STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS
The MOE is always concerned with the requirements of students with special needs. One of the steps taken by the MOE is to ease the financial burden of parents of students with special needs by providing financial assistance monthly.

3.15 THE SUPPLEMENTARY READING PROGRAMME IN SABAH AND SARAWAK (SRP)
The Supplementary Reading Programme in Sabah and Sarawak (SRP) is a collaborative effort between the MOE and UNICEF. The aim of this programme is to increase the quality of teaching and learning in primary school located on islands and remote areas of Sabah and Sarawak. The objectives of the programme are: a. b. to supply additional and interesting teaching and learning materials; and to inculcate good reading habits among students through the supply of teaching and learning materials to schools.

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3.16 THE NILAM PROGRAMME
Nadi Ilmu Amalan Membaca (NILAM) is a reading programme established to recognise and award good reading habits among pupils in school. This programme emerged from the combination or integration of all activities to inculcate the love for knowledge in schools. The NILAM Programme includes plans to inculcate reading habits continuously through systematic management of reading activities in schools. This reading programme is continuously monitored throughout the year. The aim of the NILAM programme is to inculcate good reading habits among pupils in Malaysia. The objectives of this programme are: a. to produce pupils who are avid readers of quality materials from various fields; and b. to encourage school to continuously generate creative and innovative ideas in instilling good reading habits among pupils.

The NILAM programme is divided into two levels;

a.

Level One - Jauhari
The objective of this level is to develop interest in reading and reading skill that is inculcated as habit. This level requires pupils to participate in activities which encourage reading planned by the School Resource Centre (SRC) throughout the year.

b.

Level Two – Reading Peer (RP)
The objective of this level is to increase pupils’ participation and usage of materials in promoting reading activities. This level places emphasis on pupils’ ability to guide and attract others’ interest in reading.

Implementation Strategies
The implementation of the NILAM programme at the state level is done by the State Education Department while the secretariat of the programme is the State Education Resource Centre. Activities that are carried out include programme placement, supervision, evaluation and reporting for the purpose of programme modification or improvement. The details on the types of activity and implementation strategies; the role of the school community; the involvement of parents; the types of reading materials; the specification of reading materials; the reading record; the process of monitoring and evaluation; and the variuos school-based activities are stipulated in the NILAM programme manual.
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The National NILAM Award
This objective of the National NILAM Award (Tokoh NILAM Kebangsaan) is to give recognition to a pupils who has read the highest number pf books. The award is presented annually and is under the jurisdiction of the Educational Technology Division which acts as the secretariat for the Main Committee of the Reading Programme. The methods of evaluation used are guided interviews and supervised written test by a panel of professional judges.

3.17 THE SCHOOL RESOURCE CENTRE (SRC)
The School Resource Centre (SRC) is a place that provides references and collections of reading materials to the school community and a conducive learning environment for selflearning. The Educational Technology Division is responsible for monitoring the role of the SRC and ensuring the effectiveness of the SRC in the teaching and learning processes. Objectives of the School Resource Centre (SRC):

     

To achieve academic excellence To inculcate learning habits To produce teaching and learning materials To provide learning experience To ensure use of the facilities at the optimum level To teach information skills

3.18 ICT IN EDUCATION
The objective of the ICT in Education was to expose pupils to basic computer literacy. With the advancement of ICT in education, the MOE has provided all the technology requirements such as application system and ICT infrastructure to create an effective and efficient management system. Realising ICT as an enabler in the management of education information, the MOE has strengthened avrious systems and databases through data mining, integrating information systems from all agencies in the MOE and upgrading ICT infrastucture in concurrent with the needs of e-government and e-management. The MOE has outlined three main ICT policies in education which are: a. b. c. ICT literacy for student; ICT as a curriculum and teaching and learning tool; and ICT for the improvement of productivity, and the effectiveness and efficiency of management system.
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The MOE has provided sufficient and the latest ICT infrastructure, and info structure equipped with networking facilities to all levels of organisation to wiedn its use in teaching and learning, and education management. ICT in education aims at increasing the development of ICT infrastructure, enhancing access and equity for ICT facilities in urban and rural areas, developing and expanding ICT-based curriculum, and enhancing students’ motivation towards learning. The MOE has made intiatives in the use of ICT in teaching and learning through projects such as the Smart School Project, School Access Centre and Making School Smart Programme.

3.19 EDUCATIONAL TELEVISION PROGRAMMES
In line with the evolution of technology, the Educational Technology Division (ETD) has broadcasted all educational television programmes using the Astro channel. This endeavour viewers to watch quality and international programmes. At present, educational television programmes are being telecast through TV9 channel. Among the types of programmes broadcast are as follow:

     

Programmes Based on the Curriculum Programmes Acquired from Private Sector Collaborative Programmes Lensa TVP Programme Bicara TVP and Laman Muda Programme Special Programme

3.20 EDUWEB TV
Web TV project of MOE is a project implemented to bridge the educational gap between the rural and urban areas as well as the remote areas. Teachers are able to preview and watch the selected television programmes; then use them in their teaching and learning process irrespective of the scjool’s location and the schedule of programme. Students throughout the nation are able to access educational learning aids which are hosted onto the data centre. The public is also given information on the development as well as various opportunities in national education.

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REFLECTIVE
a. The objective of the implimentation ICT in Education was to expose pupils to the basic computer literacy. Discuss the outlined ICT policies that MOE introduced. b. What can the teachers benefit from the Schorship programme for the developing “Teaching Professionalism”

REFERENCES
Malaysia, Educational Planning and Research Division. Education in Malaysia. A Journey to Excellence. (2008) Ministry of Education, Malaysia. Curriculum Development Division. (2011). Ministry of Education Malaysia. Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013: www.moe.gov.my/userfiles/file/PPP/Preliminary-Blueprint-Eng.pdf Basic School Information January 2008. Ministry of Education, Malaysia. Educational development in Malaysia and Oman: Two Sucess Stories 2008. Ministry of Education, Malaysia and Sultanate of Oman, Ministry of Education. Panduan Pengurusan Sekolah Berkesan (2006). Bahagian Sekolah Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia. Pelan Induk Pembangunan Pendidikan (PIPP) 2006-2010. Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia Pelan Strategik Pengajian Tinggi Negara: Melangkaui 2020, Kementerian Pengajian Tinggi Malaysia. Quick Facts 2007, Education Planning and Research Division, Ministry of Education Malaysia. Quick Facts 2008, Education Planning and Research Division, Ministry of Education Malaysia. Written report, information and statistics from respective divisions in the Ministry of Education, Malaysia www.moe.gov/bppdp (website of Education Planning and Research Division, Ministry of Education, Malaysia.
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