Kedah, Bosnia schools in tie-up
By Nadia Badarudin
SK Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin is among the country's 23 high-performance schools, while Camil Sijaric, located in Sarajevo, was selected as the best primary school in Bosnia-Herzegovina in 2008.
Headmaster K. Thacanamurthy said the programme would help to improve communication skills between teachers and students of the two schools.
"The exchange programme will involve teachers and Years Four, Five and Six pupils from both schools. They will share knowledge, teaching methods and skills, and cultures through visits, as well as through the Internet.
"The concept of learning by 'virtual-sharing' through video-conferencing and the Internet will be utilised throughout the programme.
"Besides sending our teachers and students to Bosnia-Herzegovina to learn new things, we will also be welcoming students from Camil Sijaric and exposing them to our culture by arranging homestay programmes," he said after signing a memorandum of understanding on the exchange programme between the schools here yesterday.
Thacanamurthy signed on behalf of SK Sultan Ahmad Tajuddin, while Camil Sijaric was represented by its headmistress, Professor Jasmina Husic.
Jasmina said Malaysia was significant in Camil Sijaric's history as the Malaysian government helped to rebuild the school when it was destroyed during the Bosnian War in the 1990s.
The school, named after Camil Sijaric, a famous Bosnian poet, was reconstructed in 1996 after the Education Ministry collected donations from teachers and students throughout the country.
"When the school was destroyed, lessons were taught at some of the teachers' homes.
"It was hard, but with the help of Malaysians and your spirit of brotherhood, we were able to pick up the pieces and rebuild the school.
"It was reopened in 1997 by Datuk Seri Najib Razak, who was then the education minister."
She hoped the exchange programme would help pupils from her school to improve their English, among others.
"During the early primary school years, all subjects are taught in the Bosnian language. The pupils will be given the opportunity to learn other languages such as English, German and French when they turn 10.
"We hope this partnership will enable the pupils to master English with help from their Malaysian peers," she said, adding that Camil Sijaric was also known as "Sekolah Malaysia", in recognition of Malaysia's help in the country's reconstruction programme.