Why I Chose NOT To Be An SISC+

What in the world is an SISC+?

I've been trying to find an official definition for SISC+ from 'official' sites but have failed to find any with both 'School Improvement Specialist Coaches' & 'Jurulatih Pakar Pembangunan Sekolah' on Google. If you want a good laugh, try to Google 'SISC+' & click the first link. Anyway, I will try my best to explain it in my own words.

SISC+ is a new post at District Education Offices nationwide for experienced teachers. At this stage, SISC+ have been recruited for BM, BI & Math. Very soon, they will begin recruiting teachers for Science. SISC+ do not teach. They will spend 70% of their time visiting classrooms & coaching teachers of the lowest performing schools in their district. They will observe teachers & help teachers develop on the job. By providing direct mentoring to teachers, it is the aspiration of the ministry that the quality of education in Malaysia will improve.

In theory, this sounds great. I would have appreciated a mentor during my first few years. Even now I admit that I have blind-spots & biases, I could use a coach who is better & has achieved more. I do hope that they implement this properly or it would be another white elephant which cannot be removed because the livelihood of hundreds are dependant on it. Anybody can see that this job can be easily abused by lazy workers, used as a gathering of cronies or used as a dumping ground for unwanted teachers.

I do hope that the teachers who are chosen are credible & proven in their classrooms. I also hope that these teachers, who have been taken away from their students, will truly be empowered to develop other teachers & make a bigger difference in our nation. I'm keeping my mind open on this & I honestly hope to see true positive results & not just inflated statistics.

In Sarawak, the vetting process is very strict & only the better teachers are finally selected. For this, I am grateful. I know several of the teachers chosen to be SISC+ & I can vouch for them any day. I can rest assured that at least in my home state someone in JPN is doing the right thing in appointing the right people into this leadership position. I expect great things from them.
~~~~~~~

Why No means No

Lately, I have been receiving unofficial/casual questions regarding my interest in this role. I suspect it is because of the many vacancies still currently available. I have thought about this last year when the first call for applications was advertised. Since then, people who know my work or people who have newly discovered my work have encouraged me to apply. I have the same answer then as I have now. It is still a firm NO.

It is not something that I see myself doing at this stage of my life because:

#1 I still have a lot to learn before I am willing to tell others what to do.
I am doing very well here in the jungle & I have made my mark. However, that is not all that I want to be. I don't just want to be a jaguh kampung. I want to at least be a jaguh Sarawak. I may be good at teaching low-performing cooperative rural students but I am completely untested with highly-competent disruptive urban students.
Strange as it may seem, I relish that challenge. I salivate mentally at the thought. I want to be able to turn tides & win hardened hearts in EVERY setting. Until I have tried that, I will not quit teaching. Also, I don't mind if I fail. The important thing is I give it my best & fail with dignity.

#2 There is still a lot that I want to do & have not done.
What I love the most about teaching is how flexible it is. The problems in education are so wide & vast, I have a whole bucket list of challenges I want to get my hands dirty with. I can address any challenge I desire. Inside & outside the classroom. Besides having lots I can choose do, there can be multiple solutions to addressing the same problem. Also, the same challenge can change from year to year, student to student. Infinite variables. Infinite challenges. Infinite possibilities. Perfect for an infinite moron with infinite ambition like me!

#3 No desire for more money, promotions, positions of power, or escapism.
No doubt, some people applied for SISC+ because of the above. Or, because they are jaded with school life & the infinite amount of challenges as well as the infinite amount of work heaped upon those who are able. I do not have such desires.
However, I do have a strong desire for less meddlers & less little Napoleons to handle. Can somebody make it legal for me to shoot these monkeys? You know, as a self-defence from stupid, ego & corruption.
~~~~~~~

When I say no, I mean it

taken from allthingslearning.wordpress.com
I think sums up what I want to say.
I am aware that there are way more vacancies than they are eligible applicants. I am also aware that PPDs are empowered to nominate whoever they want. I support what the SISC+ & SIP+ are doing. I wish them success. For now, I have no desire to join their ranks. I want to teach. Not coach. I am willing to be the ugly dirty smelly sweaty guy who does the cleaning. I want to remember what it is like to be at the bottom of the chain. It will be my biggest asset when I am at the pinnacle.

Force me & you will only force 2 things: You'll force me to lose respect for you & you'll force my resignation. Believe me, you don't want neither.

Comments

  1. you're a really great teacher you know..i learn a lot just from reading on your experience in your blogs..quite an eye opener at times, makes me question my own practices...not only that you touch your students hearts, you also touch you readers' hearts...keep on doing that ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Lys! I pour out my heart & soul into my blog. Only kindred-spirits will be touched... Most people would think me foolish or immature. =)

      Delete
    2. it's not called immature or foolish, it's called a medium of expression..i love that too ;)

      Delete
  2. *your students'

    (haha, sorry, i'm just used to doing this sort of correction :p)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Ur decision is a wise one. U will miss teaching process if u r in office. =(

    ReplyDelete
  4. Offer your help upon any teacher's sincere request, by all means. Once it is a designated post, things will no longer be the same. Humans are complicated and when you take up a post like this, rest assured that there be a whole lot of unwarranted complications.

    So, unless it's a promotion or a stepping stone to better things...or a passport to get out of the jungle, I would say that you have made the right decision. Keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's a pretty insightful observation.

      This is a promotion post & a stepping stone to better things. It seems in the future, SISC+ will be the only ones getting the best trainings so that they can train the teachers under their mentorship.

      But, as you understand very well, I prefer to stay in the classrooms & practise what I preach.

      Delete
  5. "The best training"? *guffaws* I've had my share of that. Yucks!!!

    The best training is right there in the classroom, you teach, you learn - the experience is priceless. "It's a wise and ancient thought - that as a teacher, by your pupils you'll be taught!" (Getting to know you - from The King & I)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well said! I'm staying in the classrooms because I feel that there is still a lot more that I can learn. Eventually, when I become too old for chasing down students, I'll settle for a coaching/training role. Meanwhile, it's back down to the nitty gritty!

      Delete
  6. Hehe, my GB is asking us to apply for it too. But I know I am not interested with the post. My soul lies in the heart of primary schoolchildren. I love teaching. I am not aiming for high post at kementerian but teaching, that will satisfy my soul.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do what you think is right for you & your family. Do whatever makes you the happiest. =)

      Delete
  7. Stay in school my boy. Take this advice from someone who has been teaching for 25 years. Most teachers dislike the SISCs as they usually act like they know it all. Teaching is a calling, a vocation not just a job. Like you said, you love teaching, stay doing what you do best.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Mr! Your thoughts were exactly what I wanted to hear!

      Delete
  8. Hi JKY,
    people always tell me
    "those who can teach, stay in school.. those who cant, do admin stuff" :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There's nothing wrong with doing admin stuff.
      Some people who are not great at teaching can be great administrators. They make their teachers even better!
      Some people who are great at teaching might make horrible administrators. Some people, like myself, might make a total mess of both! lol!

      Delete
  9. Mr JKY,
    You are so right. But maybe you ought to know that, you can't also choose to be an sisc+. You need to apply and will be appointed only if you qualify for it. So maybe u want to ammend your title above OR why not APPLY for the post. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. At this moment, there are more vacancies in Sarawak than there are officers. I was made an offer & I turned it down. I was also strongly urged to apply by peers. After giving it some thought, I made a decision & shared it here.
      I thought I made it clear that I wasn't going to APPLY for it? Because if I did, I'd get it. ;-)

      We are all entitled to our opinions. That's why I allow anonymous comments so that people who feel justified may safely correct me or question me.

      Delete
  10. Good to hear you are not interested to be an SISC+...That post need someone in good and positive atitudes..If you just strongly urged to apply by peers it doesn't mean you are the selected person..Outside there are many excellent teacher are waiting to share their best knowledges to others with no BIG TALK...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hahaha~~~ I agree. There are many great teachers serving as SISC+ & many of them are nurturing the teachers under their care to be just as great as they are. I fully support them & endorse their work. These SISC+ are precious to my heart.
      Also, I don't like big talk neither. I believe my walk speaks for itself.

      Delete
  11. Hi dear Jarod...I am an SISC+...finding my calling a wonderful and noble experience. There are many out there in need of guidance, coaching and companionship. Sharing beyond your own classroom actually allows one to develop and touch more hearts. SISC+ do not just sit and observe teachers...we transform their pedagogical approaches...slowly, holding their hands...we open the eyes of not only the teachers but also the students and administrators...it is a new day each day..a new school..a new class...more and more lives are touched...seriously...I feel I have served more and given more after being an SISC+ even with my 26 years of experience teaching...if you have ideas, drive, talent...go and inspire those who are in need. True ..many have misconceptions about our job...sad... but I hope in time, SISC+ throughout the country will be recognised and welcomed by most teachers. It is a joy to help fellow teachers

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Nurlina.
      Thank you for sharing your experiences!
      I'm glad that you're doing your best to actually "coach" teachers instead of being a "Nazir 2.0". I really appreciate the work you've done with your mentees & I'm sure you're one of the gems out there. I hope that you'll be my SISC+ coach when I return to the service. God knows, we need all the support we can get!

      Keep up the good work!

      Delete
  12. Hi Jarod, interesting to read the remarks and comments above. I chance upon this blog while browsing the topic SISC+. I was once a teacher and still feel like one. I cant help but notice the remark you made above, refering to SISC+ who act as Nazir2.0 when they go to schools. What does a Nazir2.0 do in schs? I know of Nazir's work but not of Nazir2.0. Perhaps a little clarification would help me ustand the above comparison. thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Back in the infancy of the SISC+ program, some of those who were made SISC+ officers did not have a clear idea of what role they were supposed to play because it was completely unprecedented. So, some SISC+s reverted to a role familiar to all teachers: the role of a school inspector: NAZIR is the acronym for the branch in the ministry. The NAZIRs used to be infamous for being very judgmental & critical of everything a teacher did. They have since changed their approach to a more progressive & inclusive one.

      Now that the SISC+ program has been running for a few years, the SISC+s understand that they are playing the role of a coach, cheerleader, & mentor instead of a critic or judge like the NAZIRs do.

      Delete
  13. Those who can, do
    ....Those who can do more, teach....

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Teacher Was Cyberbullied Because Of Their English

2019 TJ Comics: Monthly English Comics

My CPT Results

What To Do If You Miss A Megabus Ride & How Was The Ride

2019 TEDx Kenyalang: The Best Speech In My Life