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Students may get laptops instead of textbooks

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MOBILE (Alabama): The Education Ministry is considering providing all school students with laptops instead of relying on textbooks, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

Muhyiddin, who is also education minister, said the use of laptops in classes was an innovative education process that would benefit students.

Speaking to the Malaysian media after visiting the Daphne High School here, Muhyiddin said he was attracted to the Daphne school's concept where laptops were provided for all students.

"They do not belong to them and must return the laptops after finishing their studies so that other students can use them.

"The laptops are also insured against damage or losses."

He added that the Malaysian government had also installed Internet facilities in schools like the 4G connection for the benefit of students.

Some schools already have the facility while others would be getting theirs this year.

Muhyiddin added he was impressed with the Daphne students' thinking skills and creativity, as well as the holistic teaching process espoused by the school, with focus on academic, co-curriculuractivities and other related aspects, to produce well-rounded individuals.

"The students seem to be independent and have good communication skills. When I asked them questions, they answered with confidence and without fear.

"When they came up to the rostrum to talk, they knew what exactly they wanted to say.

"It shows the level of the school's excellence, and the attitude and skills are factors which we must develop among our students."

The school, with about 1,200 students, was last year honoured with the prestigious National Blue Ribbon School award by the United States' Department of Education.

The award honours public and non-public elementary, middle and high schools with excellent academic achievements.

The National Blue Ribbon school concept is similar to the high-performance school concept implemented in Malaysia by the Education Ministry.

Muhyiddin also highlighted the Daphne school's internationalisation agenda where students were given the opportunity to learn more about other countries.

"I raised the possibility of establishing links between them (the Daphne High School) and one or two schools in Malaysia through the use of technology."

During his visit, Muhyiddin also dropped by at classes and had brief interaction with students who were having lessons in world history, geography, forensic science, English and Spanish.

Muhyiddin, who is on a two-day working visit here from Wednesday, was accompanied by his wife, Puan Sri Noorainee Abdul Rahman, Malaysian ambassador to the United States, Datuk Othman Hashim and Education Ministry deputy secretary-general, Datuk Dr Khair Mohamad Yusof.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and his wife, Puan Sri Noorainee Abdul Rahman, taking a closer look at student Samuel Holmes Seawell’s work during a visit to Daphne High School in Mobile, Alabama, yesterday. Bernama pic


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