| Izah Azahari & Abdul Hakiim Yakof |
THE majority of schools in Brunei Darussalam are now back in session for the first term with students, accompanied by their parents, seen flocking to register for primary and secondary-level classes yesterday. The Bulletin visited a few schools in the Brunei-Muara District to speak with school officials and parents.
Acting Principal of the Preschool and Primary Section of Seri Mulia Sarjana School, Putri Maharani Simanjuntak said the school had achieved all of its 2014 targets, which included academic results that were beyond its expectations. The school has launched a new curriculum for its pre-school and as for the PSR Examination, Seri Mulia Sarjana is ranked among the top five schools with over 41 students achieving five ‘A’s and 40 students obtaining four ‘A’s.
She said yesterday was quite hectic from as early as 6.15am as the Year 1 classes had moved back to the school campus in Jangsak, bringing the total student population to almost 1,300 including the new students who entered Kindergarten 1 and Year 1.
Hjh Norafidah binti Hj Abdul Rahim, whose son Md Noraiman Syafiq bin Abdul Aziz is in Year 2F, said that this year she had moved her son to the school as it is much closer to their home and to expose him to a different environment.
“We made preparations as early as December… but he still has to get used to this new environment physically and mentally.
“From what I’ve seen so far in the classroom… Alhamdulillah, it’s quite good,” she added.
The Bulletin also visited the Joyful Kids Montessori School to speak with Managing Director
Helen Awang Sitai and Principal Caroline Wonging, who mentioned that this week will only see the re-turn of current students as the new one will only start class next week.
Helen highlighted that the school had achieved all of its targets since 2012, hitting a capacity of 160 stu-dents for both morning and after-noon sessions.
“Every year, it is part of our curriculum to have a Book Week celebration where the children are given the opportunity to be onstage… to learn to overcome stage fright by singing, reciting poetry or acting in a drama,” said Caroline, adding that the school will also mark its 10th year of establishment in 2015 with a number of events and activities, including the production of the school’s first ever yearbook.
Meanwhile, Rimba II Secondary School also welcomed back its Year 8, 9, 10 and 11 students with an early morning assembly to remind them of its mission and targets this year.
Year 11 Science student, Dewi Amalia binti Hj Hidup, said that she was happy to be back, as she needs to prepare for her ‘O’ Level examinations later this year – “I am expecting a lot of pressure this year but I will put aside distractions such as electronics and social networking (in preparation for the exams).”
Mohd Ikram bin Abd Musauwir from Year 11 G1 also pledged to put more effort into his studies – “Even with all the pressure we must remain calm, so that we can easily memorise what we learn at school.
“We can achieve this peace of mind by starting the day with Bismillah, asking for prayers from our parents for our success and performing Subuh and other prayers.”
Tomorrow Rimba II Secondary School will be welcoming new Year 7 students who will have
three-day orientation that will feature briefings on the school’s background, achievements and programmes, sharing sessions and the fully operational 21st Century Learning Space with its various facilities.
Fazeda binti Abdul Khan, the Dean of Students, said that one of the contributors to their success over the years is the introduction of the merit system in the students’ journal “where we acknowledge the students’ improvement in every aspect”.
She shared that every term, some students will also receive a bronze, silver or platinum award under the merit system, which was first introduced at Rimba II Secondary School in 2013 and later adopted by the Menglait Secondary School and Jerudong International School.
At the end of the year, some of the award recipients will also be nominated as model students.
“As a model school, one of the main key performance indicators for us is to achieve a target of 55 per cent for five to nine credits in the ‘O’ Level examinations by 2017,” she added.
“In order to achieve this target, the school is running several programmes starting this year.
“Insya Allah, we will be starting our extra classes very soon.
“In our previous year, extra classes were held for only Year 11 students but by this year we will start with Year 10.”
The Chief Executive Officer of Rimba II Secondary School, Hjh Suriani binti Hj Noor Hashim, also said this year they will introduce the “Anak Angkat Programme” whereby some Year 11 teachers will “adopt” students to motivate them and give study tips in preparation for the ‘O’ Levels.
“I believe that the students can change their future through education…
Learning will help them change and have a better life,” she said.