A school from Batu Pahat, Johor had been under fire for segregating students to co-curricular activities based on their race and gender. In the notice, they have mentioned that football was only reserved for Malay male students, netball for Malay female students and basketball for Chinese male and female students.
According to The Star, the principal of SMK Dato’ Bentara Luar, Abdul Razak Hamid had issued an apology on Facebook after issuing such a school notice that shows blatant racism in the division of sports clubs on Saturday (17 April).
“The school overlooked the information stated in the notice that was circulated to 2021 Form One students regarding student registration for co-curricular activities.” he said.
“It was not at all our intention to touch on racial issues as the school upholds the policies and instructions set by the Ministry of Education (MOE).” he added.
Following public backlash, the school has made improvements and withdrew the previous form, as well as the applications. The apology and amendment was issued to all of the Form 1 students’ parents via a Telegram group.
Subsequently, a new form has been distributed to the students and there are no longer any restriction (i.e. race and gender) to join a particular sport.
However, due to limited spots in each club, the school may still have to intervene to make sure each club has a balanced number of students.
“We would like to apologise again and promise never to repeat such an error.” the principal added.
Besides netizens, Senior Minister of Education, Datuk Dr Radzi Jidin also expressed his shock over the matter and clarified that the implementation of race and gender restriction goes against the basis of sports programmes in schools.
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