Education and Culture Minister, Muhadjir Effendy, has recently proposed the idea to run a full day school for primary schools to give the students additional time for character building and minimise their away time from school.
UGM public policy observer, Prof. Muhadjir Darwin, sees the full day school discourse as a positive plan because it is appropriate for children’s character building, particularly there is moral degradation and crisis among the youths at these times.
“The idea for full day school is feasible to be adopted to minimise the negative influence from outside school. The children will have more guided activities as well as character building and education,” he said on Friday (12/8) at UGM.
In Indonesia, full day school has already run in a number of private schools. He said,
“The full day school is good, but the implementation has to be well prepared,” he said. He added this can be tested in several urban state schools that have good facilities. It can also help out the difficulty of working parents,” he said. But he hopes the school should not give more classes for the children so that their right is not reduced. Others can be given instead, for instance, extracurricular activities, skills, sports, cultural and arts, etc. He further called on an in-depth study of the idea if it is to be enacted.
Child development observer from Faculty of Psychology of UGM, Dr. Maria Goretti Adiyanti, has asked the government not to haste the full day school programme. Further research and study need to be taken to determine the education target, programme to be given, teacher’s preparedness, facilities and infrastructure, funding, etc.
Maria mentioned the idea is good for parents who have a full day job. But the full day school isolates the students from their environment and peers as well as reduced time to interact with their parents.
She said, “There are vulnerabilities at school, bullying is also highly possible, adding that “On character building, it is already included in the curriculum.”
She asked for evidence of positive results following the full day school implementation, saying,” If it is to be implemented, there has to be evidence of the success of the programme whether it impacts positively on the children. The implementation has also to be child friendly where they can have play time and rest time,” she recommended.