KUALA LUMPUR: A total of 139,197 or 2.9% of primary and secondary school students are involved in the Education Ministry's Dual Language Programme (DLP).
Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid (pix) said they were students from 1,216 schools, comprising 587 primary, and 629 secondary schools across the country.
"DLP, which was introduced last year is a voluntary programme which does not involve all schools and students. The principal or headmaster has the right to reject if the school is not interested or not willing to implement DLP," he said during the Ministers' Question Time (MQT) at the Dewan Rakyat today.
He was answering a question from G. Manivannan (PKR-Kapar) regarding the current status of DLP, and the criteria used to allow schools to practise the programme.
Mahdzir said DLP gave preference to schools which met the criteria for teaching and learning in English and Bahasa Malaysia for the Mathematics and Science subjects.
Mahdzir said the government had also taken various proactive measures to improve the English proficiency of teachers involved in the programme.
He said a total of 1,732 teachers had signed up to participate in online training for proficiency in the English language offered by the English Language Training Center (ELTC) this year.
Elaborating, Mahdzir said schools must meet four criteria to implement the DLP, namely, adequate resources, the willingness of the principals or headmasters and teachers, demand and support from parents, and the school's performance in Bahasa Malaysia. — Bernama