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New Straits Times » LearningCurve

KIRKBY ALUMNI: A tribute to Kirkby College
YAQIN CHING ABDULLAH


July 17
IN 1951 the Government of the Federation of Malaya (now Malaysia) established the Malayan Teachers’ Training College at Kirkby, England.

Pioneer principal of the college Robert Williams says: “By any standard, it was unique in the history of education. For the first time, the government of a country had established in a far-off land a teachers’ college for its students. Never before had any government in the world set up its college in Britain.”

This unique educational experiment produced a group of teachers whose minds have been expanded by travel and whose professional skills have been developed in a first-class college which existed from 1951 to 1962.

When the Kirkby Alumni held its 50th anniversary in 2001 in Kuala Lumpur, Raja Permaisuri Perak Tuanku Bainun who had studied at Kirkby College, said in her message in the souvenir publication The Golden Panduan: “I feel that in recognition of the historic and significant role of the former Kirkby College, some form of permanent record should be thought of to perpetuate its memory.”

Tuanku Bainun had her wish come true when she signed a plaque naming a hall Dewan Kirkby at Maktab Perguruan Tuanku Bainun in Bukit Mertajam on April 28.

The event was in conjunction with the convocation of the college. To mark the occasion, Tuanku Bainun presented a LCD projector to the college on behalf of former Kirkby students.

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