This is the first of many collaborations that Al-Irsyad Singapore has with schools in the region. As part of the partnership, the Singapore curriculum and methods will be introduced in Al-Irsyad Satya Islamic School.
This auspicious event took place on 16th January 2007 at Shangrila Hotel, Jakarta and is witnessed by Dr Juwono Sudarsono (Defense Minister, Republic of Indonesia) and Dr Yaacob Ibrahim (Minister of the Environment and Water Resources and Minister in-charge of Muslim Affairs, Singapore).
The partnership with Yayasan Parahyangan Satya in Kota Baru Parahyangan, Padalarang, Bandung sees Irsyad assisting in project consultancy and management, curriculum transfer, training and development and systems franchise. The school will join other premier international school, a Christian missionary school and an international school for foreign languages that are already in operation in the education township.
Dr Yaacob, who witnessed the signing of the memorandum of understanding, told the Singapore media: “This MOU is an important step. In some ways, it is a recognition of our effort to build a madrasah that can fit into the modern world.”
Dr Yaacob further added that, “Al-Irsyad is a Singaporean system where there is a balance between the demands of the religious loads and the secular loads. I think that is important to demonstrate to the wider community that it is possible to get the best of both worlds.”
The head of the YPS, Mr Poedji Koentarso, told The Straits Times that the decision to adopt the Singapore Islamic school curriculum was taken after a long process of research and visits to Islamic schools in Jakarta, Malaysia and Singapore. “After a laborious search, we found the Singapore school has the right mix between religious and secular academic studies,” he said.
Another advantage is the use of English as the main medium of instruction for the academic subjects. “Finally, we chose Al-Irsyad because it is a Singapore brand,” he said.