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Teaching Posts (Graduates)

Volume 531: debated on Wednesday 28 July 1954

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asked the Secretary of State for the Colonies whether he is aware that only a small number of Malayan graduates accept teaching posts; what is the reason for this; to what extent teaching appointments are reserved for non-Malayan teachers; and what steps he proposes to take to induce more Malayan graduates to take up such posts in Singapore and the Federation.

Malayan graduates are still comparatively few, and most of them prefer to enter the Civil Service rather than become teachers. No teachers' appointments are reserved for non-Malayans. No special steps are thought necessary to attract Malayan graduates to the teaching profession since the position is expected to right itself naturally as their numbers increase.

Is the Minister quite satisfied that the salaries and other conditions for Malayan graduates are on an absolute equality with other people?

While there is no doubt that the remuneration prospects for teachers both in Singapore and in Malaya are very good indeed, we have no reason to think that the pay is in any sense a deterrent to their job.

Is the Minister aware that since the establishment of the university at Singapore five years ago only 14 graduates have taken up appointments as teachers? Would he examine the position and find out why it is that such a small number of graduates are going into the teaching profession in Singapore and in Malaya?

I gave the answer in reply to the Question, but I would point out that of some 435 graduates from the university of Malaya, no less than 42 in the past five years have obtained Diplomas of Education and are believed to have joined either Government or aided schools in the Federation or Singapore.