KUALA LUMPUR – The atmosphere was emotionally charged. There was anxiety, concern, fear, excitement, sobs, laughter ….
The 2016 first-day-of-school blues did not spare anyone – neither the children nor their parents.
These were familiar scenes today in schools in several states and the federal territories of Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan.
They were almost a repeat of the atmosphere in schools in Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Johor where schools reopened yesterday, a day earlier.
The Education Ministry, in a statement issued in Putrajaya, said 448,677 pupils started Standard One classes throughout the country this year.
These pupils, admitted to 7,765 primary schools, comprised 229,808 boys and 218,869 girls, it said.
The ministry said 314,697 started Standard One classes today while 133,980 did so yesterday in Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Johor.
It also said that Selangor had the highest number of Standard One pupils, at 89,419, followed by Johor (54,492) and Sabah (43,879).
The ministry said 443,008 students entered Form One at 2,402 secondary schools in the country.
Again, Selangor had the highest number of Form One students, at 83,368, followed by Johor (54,550) and Sabah (41,945).
In MELAKA, 9,636 pupils started Standard One classes in 237 schools in the state, said State Education, Higher Education, Science and Technology, Green Technology and Innovation Committee chairman Datuk Md Yunos Husin.
He also said 13,360 students started Form One classes in 77 secondary schools.
In PENANG, 19,123 pupils entered Standard One in 687 schools in the state, a drop from the 21,962 last year, said state education director Shaari Osman.
A total of 22,284 students started Form One classes in the state, he told reporters during a visit to Sekolah Kebangsaan Genting in Balik Pulau.
In PERAK, 37,532 pupils began Standard One classes, higher than the 33,228 who had done so last year, state education director Rozi Puteh Ismail told reporters during a visit to Sekolah Kebangsaan Pakatan Jaya in Ipoh.
In SABAH, Standard One pupils this year numbered 43,584 in 1,072 schools, with Kota Kinabalu having the highest number of 6,685 pupils followed by Sandakan (4,212) and Tawau (4,118).
State education director Datuk Jame Alip advised all headmasters to ensure there were enough textbooks, chairs and desks for the pupils.
In NEGERI SEMBILAN, 16,723 pupils started Standard One classes in 349 schools, said state education director Rusni Ab Jalil after visiting Sekolah Kebangsaan (SK) LB Johnson and Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan (SMK) Bandar Enstek in Nilai.
SMK Bandar Enstek is a new school with six classrooms, four for Form One with 198 students and two for Form Two with 70 students. The school has 16 teachers and two support staff.
In PAHANG, 24,268 pupils started Standard One classes in 536 primary schools in the state, up from 23,583 last year, said head of the Schools Management Sector Mohd Pauzi Taib.
In SELANGOR, 91,509 pupils entered Standard One in 656 schools in the state.
State education director Zainuren Mohd Noor said their number was an increase of 4,190 from the 87,319 last year.
He also said that two schools – Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Tamil (SJKT) Ladang Dominion, Semenyih, and SJKT Ladang 15, Hulu Selangor – had only one Standard One pupil each while SJKT Ladang Mary, Bestari Jaya, had no Standard One pupil this year. – BERNAMA