How I Spent My APC Bonus

I recently received the Anugerah Perkhidmatan Cemerlang award in Kapit. Read about it here & here.
For the award, I received two certificates of recognition: 1 from the PPD & 1 from KPM.
Along with the certificates, I was given a cash bonus of RM1000.

Knowing that I'd get a cash bonus, many colleagues at school (as well as teachers from other schools) started making requests for treats & stuff. Obviously, I did not accept their requests. I just politely laughed. In my head, I decided to be the only one to decide who would receive what on my own terms.
And that was what I did.

Over the years, I have been very observant. I observed teachers who couldn't be bothered with anything other than 'doing time' in class. I observed teachers, who were very good at talking, constantly get away with pushing their work onto less socially gifted teachers. I observed teachers who would do a little bit of work & then lament to heaven & earth that he was being worked like an ox. I observed teachers who took credit for the work of others. I observed teachers who were lazy but demanded rewards just because they served longer years.

On the other hand, I had the privilege of working with teachers who gave their best to their students during lessons by well-thought colourful handouts & creative activities. I listened to teachers who were full of ideas & imagination on just about anything. I learned from teachers who had pure influence & control over the students. I was mentored by a leader who had a vision & did all he could to communicate that vision & push it through the ranks. I was naturally attracted to this group.

I have also consoled good teachers who wanted to quit because of poor leadership. I witnessed hard-working teachers cry because they did not receive the support & recognition they deserved.
It is usually the talented & dedicated teachers who leave the profession out of heartbreak. The lazy ones are very comfortable & wouldn't mind sitting there until retirement.
What are we doing to keep the good ones in school? Who will be left when the good ones leave? Think about it.

Sometimes worth is not measured in diplomas, degrees, masters or PhDs. That's why I refuse to take part in the paper race (a teacher's version of rat race).
Sometimes worth is not measured by PR skills. That's why I refuse to brown-nose. I only give credit where it is due & never take undue credit for myself. I tell it the way I see it. So be it if you don't like me & stunt my promotion. It reflects more on you than it does on me.
Worth cannot be easily measured. That is why I dislike simplistic statements like you are a good teacher because you appeared in the newspaper. Do you even know what I do at school? Then, find out before you dish out superficial statements & empty praise.

I have my own measure of worth & with half of my bonus. I bought simple gifts to appreciate the teachers & staff in my school who have really contributed to the welfare & development of the students. Most times, at their own expense.

One hardworking teacher who was unjustly treated, sobbed uncontrollably when I gave her a gift & said some kind words to her.
I believe she will rise even higher & work even harder after this. Is this not the kind of teachers we want?
What are you doing for them?
This silent minority are rarely appreciated. Even though it is supposed to be the principals job to protect & support the good teachers, I choose to take action. I cannot stand by & watch a leader's neglect suck out the souls of diligent teachers. I must support them with what I can lest they lose their passion to serve.
I believe it is more blessed to give than to receive. Although I could use the extra cash, I am more than willing to give part of what I have received to encourage others.

How have you spent your APC bonus? Is there a better investment than blessing those who will pay dividends by giving even more to the students?


  1. I don't know why, but I feel so lead to tell you;
    THANK YOU. For helping the heroes to sing their unsung song.

    "And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased." -Hebrews 13:16

    1. Eventually, the reaction that I'm hoping for is for good teachers to keep believing & for those with any kind of power to follow my lead or do something even better.

  2. Liz Adinan27/6/12 19:15

    Very heroic. the biggest profit i have seen a man made at work is not any of the men in the banks ive worked..n i have seen many men making millions of ringgit for is today that i realized, that man is a passionate teacher in rural Sarawak who serves the most honorable purpose : to inspire others. no amount of money or dollar signs can put a value on that. keep up d great work n keep believing in your goals to educate n inspire! thanks for inspiring me ;) -liz adinan

    1. Wow! Thanks for the kind words, Liz! =)

  3. You are such an inspiration Ah Kam! Pls keep up the good work!!

  4. Watch out for my post on this in a couple of days time...

  5. Congrats! I am waiting and hoping for my own. :) -Jane

    1. I never aimed for this award. I just followed my heart & eventually such things followed.

  6. Wow! Marvellous post!

    I like this statement :
    "Over the years, I have been very observant"

    Surely by becoming an observer, we may improved and revised ourselves especially for teachers..

    Keep it up and bro, your story really inspiring me..

    1. Thanks, Shaidan.
      I believe that you too are an inspiration to many others! =)

  7. Ah Kam Ko Ko.. first time I visit your blog..
    I salute you for being YOU...
    Not only teachers ... it is the same in the corporate world...
    I really hate those ppl that always demand this and demand that but what did they do to contribute?
    I always believe that you just do your best and you shall be rewarded.. no need to ask and your boss will know your good and hard work...
    Ah Kam ko ko... you deserve it.. GOOD JOB..

    1. Thanks, Simple.
      I wish you all the success in your profession! =)

  8. =)

    Good way of choosing who to treat. Somehow, I always feel like quitting when the burden of workload get to me. But as you already know, I am inspired by you, who never fail to keep fighting the pressure by loving things you are doing. You are a good teacher.

    I have many things to improve in myself. I will keep on trying and never give up, with you in my mind.

    Thanks for being my role model. hehe.

    1. WOW. It's really risky to base your career on a human being. Let me be the first to say that I am not perfect. I have my faults.

      Eventually, you will need to reflect on yourself & choose your own path.
      Meanwhile, I will do my best to provide you with my version of unconventional wisdom & actions. =)

    2. Yeah yeah sure. Of course I will only look at your good side no worries about that haha! Being choosy is one of my good qualities. =P

  9. How much more admirable can u get? :)
    The first word that came to my mind = THE UNSUNG HEROES!

    And you're one of them, Jarod!
    Me is proud of you.!

    1. hahaha~~
      Oh well, it's not about me. There are so many teachers out there who need encouragement. I've got more than my fair share.
      Some work harder than me without anything. Then, they quit. What a loss to our nation's children.

  10. Anonymous3/7/12 01:51

    First time landing on your blog and came across this very interesting post. The world needs more people like you! Keep up the good work. God bless!

    1. Thanks, buddy. I hope that you're doing the same.

  11. It is.. =/

    But on a side note.. You're so selfless! ahhh.. salutes!

    1. I'm not actually selfless. I kept 50% of the bonus for myself see?


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