Indonesia keen on setting up vocational school
The Indonesian government is looking to set up a vocational school in Kota Kinabalu, as part of its human capital development for children of nationals working in Sabah and Sarawak.
Indonesian Ambassador to Malaysia Rusdi Kirana said the school would provide courses such as mechanical engineering, tourism and hospitality, as well as those relating to the agriculture and plantation sectors.
Indonesia would also discuss with its Sarawak counterpart on setting up a skills training institute in the state.
At the same time, they would continue to get feedback from growing industries in Sabah and Sarawak on the type of courses and training that were suitable for the local job market.
“We need to provide education and knowledge to children, especially those who followed their parents to work in Malaysia as means to develop the human capital.
“We must give these children access to education so they can have a bright future.
“When they grow up, they can contribute to Indonesia or even use their talent in this country,” Rusdi said when launching 18 new community learning centres (CLC) for Sarawak at the Indonesian Consulate here yesterday.
With some 150,000 Indonesian workers estimated in Sarawak, the ambassador raised the need to tackle issues of children without access to education.
While the figure is not known, he believed it could reach thousands.
“The number of Indonesian children not receiving education is deemed a serious issue in the country.
“We must tackle this issue immediately and not prolong for the next 10 to 20 years.
“These children, if they remain uneducated and have difficulty in finding jobs and securing careers when they grow up, could create social issues for both countries,” he said.
Rusdi urged plantation companies in Sarawak to set up more CLCs to provide primary school education to Indonesian children.
He advised Indonesian workers in the state to find work with companies that have CLC for the betterment of their children.
“Education is a must, it is a human right. If companies employing Indonesian workers here do not have a CLC for the children, I urge the parents to find work elsewhere for the sake of their children. Find other plantations or companies,” he said.
On a related note, Rusdi added that the Indonesian government was looking to set up a primary school in Entikong, next to Sarawak’s border town of Tebedu, to provide continuous education for children from CLCs.
He said the school would have boarding facilities so while the parents work in Sarawak, they can visit their children at their convenience.
Currently, there are 54 CLCs in Sarawak catering to over 2,500 students.
The Indonesian government provides books, education and study materials, as well as educators for the centre.