Nurturing qualified teachers
IF you are currently employed in a preschool, public school, childcare centre or other childhood care facility, it is good to keep in mind that under the 10th Malaysia Plan, early childhood care and education ( ECCE) teachers are being encouraged to meet a minimum qualification standard set by the Government.
The standard of ECCE teachers plays a crucial role in determining the quality of Malaysia’s future generations.
In response to the number of teachers in this segment who do not possess any formal qualification ( 93%), this plan focuses on raising the standards of ECCE teachers through certification and training.
Subsequently, the Malaysian Government formulated the National Policy for ECCE. Under this policy, programmes have been introduced to meet the diverse needs of the crucial early years ( newborns till the age of six).
The policy was initiated to:
Provide children with a foundation for healthy growth and development, exposing them to activities in nation- building
Enhance their readiness for primary school education
Encourage initiatives that will make early childhood programmes more accessible, especially to urban disadvantaged children, through allocation of funds.
The Bachelor of Early Childhood with Honours ( BECHE) programme at Open University Malaysia ( OUM) is designed to meet this need and the needs of anyone in the field of ECCE.
It is aimed at further developing the specialist skills and knowledge gained through the completion of Diploma in Early Childhood Education ( DECE).
This is in line with the organisation’s mission to widen access to quality education as well as provide lifelong learning opportunities by adopting an engaging learning environment at a competitive and affordable cost.
The ECCE formula at OUM was built on the Government’s initiative to give the private sector the lead in developing high- quality ECCE programmes.
All programmes at OUM, including its ECCE programmes, are fully accredited by the MQA.
The subjects encompassed in the BECHE programme cover a wide array of areas, including child psychology, play and physical therapy, health and nutrition, creative movement, and moral development.
In addition, OUM offers BECHE learners two electives: music and special needs education.
Learners who have fulfilled all course requirements are qualified to undergo industrial training.
One of the great things about taking up BECHE at OUM is that learners can perform their industrial training at their own respective centres.
They do not need to travel out of their location or move to a different childcare centre for it.
Dr Azhar Md Adnan, early childhood care and education expert at OUM, says “Learners can undergo training at their own preschools or childcare centres or suggest any relevant centres that are established or registered under the relevant authorities.
If the need arises, we arrange placements for our learners in collaboration with certain agencies and centres.”
The May 2016 intake is now open for registration.
To register, visit fastrac. oum. edu. my or walk into any of OUM’s 37 learning centres nationwide.
For more information, call 03- 2773 2121, e- mail enquiries@ oum. edu. my or WhatsApp 012- 303 9934/ 35.