KUCHING: The Education Ministry has provided a special allocation of RM35.74 million to Sarawak to carry out urgent repair and maintenance works on 853 dilapidated schools this year.
Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik, in his Facebook post of the summary to his answer in Parliament on July 31, said the distribution of the allocation was based on the priority of the scope of work recommended by the Sarawak Education Department (JPNS) and subject to the total allocation received by the ministry.
Maszlee also revealed that 41 out of 116 projects to upgrade the dilapidated schools in Sarawak have been completed, while seven other projects are progressing above 80 per cent.
He also said the Education Ministry had also allocated RM2.7 million to the Sarawak Education Department for the acquisition of properties including school furniture based on the priorities identified by the JPNS.
In noting that there are 3,000 dilapidated schools in Malaysia, Maszlee said he has visited many and will continue to visit dilapidated schools throughout the country to find the best solution for the problem.
When touching on school power supply, he said his ministry is working on electricity supply to schools in Sarawak in four phases with a cost of RM400 million which include connecting schools to the nearby electricity grid as well as installing solar hybrid systems.
JPNS aims to ensure that all schools involved will receive electricity supply so that pupils can continue with their learning.
Maszlee said works to connect schools without electricity supply in Sarawak to the main grid have been assigned to Public Works Department based on the Treasury Department’s directive.
Maszlee added that JPNS has devised a development plan to address the issues of dilapidated schools, schools with two sessions and high population schools in Sarawak to be in line with the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2025 and Sarawak Transformation Plan (STP) 2016-2030.
On treated water supply, Maszlee said the ministry is targeting to get most schools in Sarawak to be supplied with treated water by next year. Maszlee also revealed that JPNS has approved the construction of Sekolah Kebangsaan Tabar Said Sembana 12-classroom primary school in Puncak Borneo parliamentary constituency.
Maszlee took the opportunity to thank all elected representatives who are very committed and passionate about the country’s education development and bringing up issues that his ministry has to pay attention to.
He stressed that the ‘New Malaysia’ is a Malaysia with a voice, stating that he would take note of all the issues brought up, study them in the greatest detail, and do his best to solve them.
Meanwhile, Assistant Minister of Education and Technological Research Dr Annuar Rapaee recently revealed that RM5 billion is required to repair and rebuild some 1,020 dilapidated schools across Sarawak.
Source: SARAWAK GOVERNMENT