I REFER to the letter “Invite VVIPs to lead gotong-royong,” (The Star, May 12).
While I agree with the suggestion that VVIPs should be invited to carry out the gotong-royong, I am perplexed to hear the suggestion for students to replace teachers for the gotong-royong perdana programme.
When students are involved, the whole teaching staff has to be there too.
Who is going to take care of the students? Basically, it goes back to square one. We do not expect
parents to monitor their kids.
It is naive to think that parents will complain that their kids are being abused by taking part in the programme. I do not see any harm in students being involved, provided there is proper supervision.
If all parents are committed, the programme can be implemented not only on Teachers Day but at least once a month.
All that is needed is for the PTAs to organise it on a rotation basis in order to get all the students, teachers and parents involved.
My suggestion is simple. Set aside one weekend a month and draw up a list of chores that needs to be done. Maybe on the first week, it could be sprucing up the building, like washing and painting worn-out areas and the following month could be landscaping and so forth.
But for this to be successful, parents must be cooperative.
They could choose a weekend convenient to them and their children and inform the respective PTAs. There is no need to worry about teachers as they will be there.
As a parent of school-going children, I do not mind attending a gotong-royong once a year provided all parents and students are involved.
We do not need everyone to come at one time.
Let's stagger and space out the work over the year and I am sure once the school gets a face-lift by the sweat of the parents, teachers and students, it will be appreciated and can be turned into a social bonding exercise.
Let's not point fingers at who is going to be the janitor or labourer. Let's get together and work as a team.