PERCEPTION

A.
Background

       There is intense pressure among
non-English speaking countries to develop their English ability to competence
among people all over the world to get better position in politics, business,
education, etc. In some Asian countries, an institution with students who have
high English language proficiency is highly regarded (Cho, 2012; Wa-Mbaleka,
2014).  Over the past years, Indonesian
citizen had been taught English since elementary school to senior high school
as it is a compulsory subject among those years.

       However, recently some of schools in
Indonesia (elementary to senior high school) have been implemented the 2013
curriculum which removes English as compulsory subject in elementary school
level. In the 2013 curriculum, at elementary school, English is only for
extra-curricular subject. “Elementary schools won’t
have English lessons because students haven’t even learned to understand the
Indonesian language yet,” Kasim (Ministry of Education, Indonesia) said, as
cited by the Jakarta Post (2012). The removal of English will be omitted
periodically, In 2013 only grades one and two that did not have English
classes. In 2014-2015, it was no longer taught in grades one, two, three and
four. In 2015-2016, grades one, two, three, four and five. Eventually, in
2016-2017, no grade will receive English classes according to Desyani,
Tempo.co. This removal is also supported by Indonesian President, Joko Widodo,
he said, “It would be better to teach
English to Junior High School students, so that elementary students have more
sense of nationalism.”

       Member of Commission X of House of
Representatives (DPR) stated, “This policy is a proper thing to implement for
making students able to focus on cultural of Bahasa Indonesia started from
elementary school.” He also alleged that by removing English in elementary
school, there is a space for young learners to be able to understand and
appreciate national language and cultures deeper. Because young learners need
to be more focus on culture than on foreign language because our own language
is one of the country’s identities to conserve. (cited in
BanjarmasinPost.co.id:2012)

       On the other hand, elementary school
years is a golden age of childhood to learn. Brain function will reach 80%
capacity started when children are 8 years old, and with stimulating it will
increase to 100%, according to Buzan (1960). Zaman (2013) said, “Elementary
years is a golden age for children to learn, it is years when their capability
of learning stronger, they need to learn another language and culture, make
friend with people who have different language and culture to develop and ease
their career in the future.”

       In fact, the learning of English in
Indonesia, especially Banjarmasin has given better progress in its education,
children who have been taught English since elementary school are having bigger
opportunity to join international student exchange because they have been
prepared since then. Children need to recognize the contributions of each
culture and to explore its value system. Acquisition of concepts about language
and ethnic groups is complex, but early, planned, and structured activities can
result in positive attitudes in children (Katz 1976, 234).

       Therefore, the
researcher would like to find out teacher’s perceptions and perspectives. Teachers’ perceptions play a crucial role in educational
perspectives. Educators have underlined a position which teachers’ perceptions
hold in education and agreed that teachers’ perceptions influence teachers’ practice, judgment and decision making
(Barcelos, 2000; Pederson, 2003; Yu, 1986). This
current issue encourages the researcher to have a research entitled Teachers’ Perceptions Toward ELT Policy at
Sixth Grade Elementary School in Banjarmasin School Year 2016/2017.

B. Research Question

       The
following are the research questions:

1.     What
are teachers’ perceptions toward ELT Policy changing?

2.     What
are the factors influencing ELT policy applied on elementary schools based on
teachers’ perspective?

3.     How
do the teachers use perception toward ELT Policy?

 

 

C. Objective of the Research

       The objectives of the
research specifically are:

1.    
To explore teachers’ perception toward ELT Policy changing.

2.    
To find out the factors influencing ELT policy applied on elementary
schools based on teachers’ perspective.

3.    
To know how the teachers use perception
toward ELT Policy.

 

D. Scope of the Research

       The main points
investigated in this research are to explore teachers’ perception toward ELT
Policy about English removal among elementary schools especially in
Banjarmasin. Besides, to find out teachers’ views about the impact of ELT
Policy toward young learners and teachers themselves. The researcher also would
like to know the factors influencing ELT Policy applied on elementary school
based on teachers’ perspective.

 

E. Assumptions

       The
assumptions according to the researcher about discovering the perception of the
teachers toward ELT policy about English removal is the teachers will not
support the government’s policy since English has become essential to learn. As
a matter of fact, English is a global language and people’ needs in this modern
era. Besides, in the golden age, elementary years might support the young learners’
possibility to learn easily and effectively.

 

F. Significances of the Research

       The findings
of the research are expected to be able to give the following advantages:

       1. For the
Government

                 
The findings can be a recommendation in making future policy.

       2. For the Teacher

                 
The findings can be a way for the teachers to express their perspectives
and opinions toward ELT Policy.

       3. For the Other Researchers

                 
The findings might give new information about teachers’ perspectives and
opinions toward the issues in education field.

G. Research Methodology

1.    
Research
Design

             “It is generally accepted in action research circles that
researchers should not rely on any single source of data, interview,
observation, or instrument” Mills (2003:52) – Noga (2007:10-11). In this research, the
researcher will use both quantitative and qualitative methods. According to Formosa, mixed methods research is the utilization of two or more different
methods to meet the aims of a research project as best as one can. The research
project may be conducted from either one or two paradigmatic stand- points
(mixed methodology study). Quantitative data is
needed to determine the extent and degree of teachers’ attitude and perception
toward ELT policy. Qualitative data, on the other hand, is needed to dig
teachers’ attitude
and perception deeper. According to Creswell (2003) mix method research has
greatly evolved and has become accepted as a valid  approach to research in the last decade. They
encouraged other researchers to use this approach because it helped to triangulate
the data.

       The researcher will use a survey and a
semi-structured interview. These
designs are preferred because the researcher focuses on the teachers’ opinion
and perception in detail.

2.     Setting of the Research

       This research will take place in
Banjarmasin. It will begin from December 2016 to January 2017.

 

3.    
Subject of the
Research

a.    
Population

        Population is the whole subject of
research (Suharsimi, 2002: 108). The total population will be 10 elementary schools and 200
teachers of sixth grade elementary schools in Banjarmasin school year 2016/2017.

b.   
Sample

       In order to decide
the size of sample, the researcher takes Suharsimi’s
perspective that explains if the population is 100 respondents or less, it is
better to take the whole population as sample. If the population is more than
100 respondents, the researcher can take 10-15% or more than 25% of the
population based on the capability of the researcher. In addition, stated by
Tashakkori & Teddlie “Selecting a relatively large number of units
from a population, or in a random manner where the probability of inclusion for
every member of the population is determinable” (2003:713). Due to the
population will be 200 teachers, the researcher prefers doing simple random
sampling by selecting 30 teachers of sixth grade among elementary schools
around Banjarmasin to fulfil the questionnaire and will take 6 teachers to
answer the interview.

 

4.    
Techniques of
Collecting Data and Instruments

       The researcher will use both
questionnaire and interview as instrument to collect data from participants. ”Questionnaires and
interviews are often used together in mixed method studies investigating
educational assessment” (Brookhart & Durkin, 2003; Lai & Waltman,
2008). While questionnaires can provide evidence of patterns amongst large
populations, qualitative interview data often gather more in-depth insights on
participant attitudes, thoughts, and actions according to Kendall (2008).

       “Rather than simply
administering questionnaire questions, as done in Baseline Study 2, this study
incorporated both questionnaires and interviews to achieve a richer picture of
perceptions” as cited in EIA (2011:3). Data will be collected through both a survey
and teacher interviews. “Investigators
administer a survey to a sample or to the entire population of people to
describe the attitudes, opinions, behaviors, or characteristics of the population”
(Creswell, 2012:376). Firstly, the teachers will be given a questionnaire to
fulfil. The questionnaire will be designed according to Five Point Likert
Scale. According to Muspafi (2004) scale is a useful tool to ascertain the
degree of agreement and disagreement with each item. Secondly, the teachers
will be given semi-structured interviews, The researcher conducting
semi-structured interviews is freer one than conducting a structured interview
(Kajornboon, 2004:75) which is the interviewer does not have to follow a
detailed interview guide. In addition, 
Patton (2002:343) recommends to “ … explore, probe, and ask questions
that will elucidate and illuminate that particular subject … to build a
conversation within a particular subject area, to word questions spontaneously,
and to establish a conversational style but with the focus on a particular
subject that gas been predetermined.” The interview will be conducted by giving
10 open-ended questions. The interview will probably
take 15-20 minutes for each participant and will be photographed.

The instruments of collecting data will be:

a.    
Questionnaire

       The first
instrument for collecting data in this research will be questionnaire. The questionnaire
will be given to 30 out of 200 teachers. It will contain 20 items of
questionnaire about teachers’ perceptions, beliefs, attitudes and opinions
toward ELT Policy at sixth grade elementary school in school year 2016/2017 .
“Questionnaire is essentially a structured technique for collecting primary
data. It is generally a series of written questions for which the respondents has
to provide the answers (Bell:1999). The questionnaire will be on Five Point
Likert Scale, ranged from Strongly Agreed (SA), Agree (A), Undecided (U),
Disagreed (DA) and Strongly Disagreed (SDA). “Likert-type
or frequency scales use fixed choice response formats and are designed to
measure attitudes or opinions.” (Bowling, 1997; Burns, & Grove, 1997).

b.   
Interview

Interviews
are particularly useful for getting the story behind a participant’s
experiences. The interviewer can pursue in-depth information around the topic.
Interviews may be useful as follow-up to certain respondents to questionnaires,
e.g. to further investigate their responses (McNamara, 1999). The researcher
will be give to 6 out of 30 teachers randomly. The interview will use
semi-structured interview or better known as open-ended questions to collect
more information from the participants. “The semi-structured interview
was employed to seek further information. The data obtained from interviews
provided deeper answers and crossed check accuracy of the observational data.
All open-ended questions were derived from aforementioned literature review and
the purposes of the study. The developed questions aimed at gaining greater
depth data about teachers’ perceptions toward ELT policy” – Srakang and Jansem
(2013), in their journal.

 

5.    
Data
Analysis

       Data will be collected from 30 out of 200 teachers among
elementary schools in Banjarmasin in order to seek overall perceptions by using
questionnaire and open-ended interview which will be personally administered to
each participant, all of them will be given back to the researcher and the
response rate will be 100%.

       The questionnaire
and interview data will be analyzed separately. The questionnaire data will be
analyzed by using descriptive statistics. Descriptive
statistics consist of methods for organizing and summarizing information
(Weiss, 1999). Furthermore, analytic process at interview session will be done
after data collected from all of respondents. To
interpret the mean score, the researcher adapted the interpreting data designed
by Chaihiranwattana & Nookua (2010) as shown in Table 1 below.

Table 1: Interpretation
of mean score of students’ attitudes

 

Mean levels

Score Range

Very positive

4.21 – 5.00

Positive

3.41 – 4.20

Neutral

2.61 – 3.40

Negative

1.81 – 2.60

Very negative

1.00 – 1.80

 

 

 

 

H. Working Theories

1.    
Perception

       The act, process, or product of perceiving, the
ability or capacity to perceive, or a particular way of perceiving (Colman,
2001, p. 543). An awareness of the truth of something. This sense is largely nontechnical
and connotes a kind of implicit, intuitive insight (Reber & Reber, 2001:519).
Moreover, “Teachers’
perceptions play a crucial role in educational perspectives. Educators have
underlined a position which teachers’ perceptions hold in education and agreed
that teachers’ perceptions influence teachers’ practice, judgment and decision
making” (Barcelos, 2000; Pederson, 2003; Yu, 1986). Additionally, teachers’
attitudes received much attention in the literature during the early 1950’s and
early 1970’s and, more recently, they have resurfaced as key to understanding
what motivates teachers’ actions (Richardson, 1996). Among other terms,
Richardson (1996:102) groups attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions as a set of
mental constructs that “name, define, and describe the structure and content of
mental states thought to drive a person’s actions.”

2.    
ELT

       English
Language Teaching is the teaching of English specifically to students whose
native language is not English (Collins English Dictionary, 2012).

3.    
ELT Policy

        Corson’s explanation
of what a language policy at national level “tries to do” offers some
clarification:

It identifies the
nation’s language needs across the range?of communities and cultural groups that it
contains;?it surveys and examines the resources available; it?identifies the role of language in general and individual
languages in particular in the life of the nation; it establishes strategies
for managing and developing language resources as it relates all of these to
the best interests of the nation through the operation of some suitable
planning agency. (1990:141)

 

       He later summarizes a national language
policy as “a set of nationally agreed principles which enables decision makers
to make choices about language issues in a rational, comprehensive and balanced
way” (1990:151).

      
Specifically, ELT Policy in this research is about removing English as compulsory subject from primary schools on the 2013 curriculum.
Mulyasa (2013) wrote some changes in 2013 curriculum
for elementary level that distinguish it from previous curriculum. They are: 1.)
Thematic-integrative: The
learning teaching process will be done based on theme. It means some subjects
are combined into one based on the theme. 2.) Eight subjects: There are ten subjects in the previous curriculum,
but in the 2013 curriculum, the ten subjects become eight subjects. Namely
Religion, Math, Indonesian, , social, science, civics education, arts and
skills (local content), and physical education (local content). 3.) Boy scouts as compulsory extra-
curricular subject. 4.) The learning
time will be longer. 5.) English
is only as extracurricular subject.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

REFERENCES

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(Eds.), Beliefs about SLA: New Research
Approaches (pp.7-33) Dordrecht : Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Brookhart, S. M., & Durkin, D. T. (2003). Classroom assessment, student motivation,
and achievement in high school social studies classes. Applied
Measurement In Education, 16(1),
27-54.

Colman, A.M. (2001). A
dictionary of psychology. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc.

Collin
English Dictionary, 2012.
(http://www.dictionary.com/browse/elt, diakses 08 Desember 2016.)

Corson, David. 1996. Language Policy Across the Curriculum
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Matters Ltd. Clevedon:
Philadelphia

Creswell,
J. W. (2012). Educational research: Planning, conducting,

and evaluating quantitative and
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Katz, P. A. Toward the Elimination of Racism. New
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Kendall, L. (2008). The conduct
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Associates.

Lai, E. R., & Waltman, K. (2008). Test preparation: Examining
teacher perceptions and practices. Educational Measurement: Issues and
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Noga, L.
L. (2007). Student Achievement and Perceptions: The Effect of a Forensic
Science Curriculum.

Patton,
M.Q. (2002). Qualitative Research and Evaluation Methods. Thousand   Oaks, CA: Sage.

Pederson,
S. (2003). Teachers’ beliefs about issues in the implementation of a
student-centred learning environment. ETR&D, 51(2), 57-76.

Reber,
A.S., & Reber, E. (2001).The dictionary of psychology (3rd ed.).
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Richardson,
V. (1996). The role of attitudes and beliefs in learning to teach. In J.
Sikula, T.J. Buttery, and E. Guyton (Eds.), Handbook of Research on Teacher
Education (pp. 102-119). New York: Macmillan Library Reference.

Srakang, L., Jansem, A. 2013, A
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10th Grade
English Teachers in Maha Sarakham
Province.

Tashakkori, A., & Teddlie, C.
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Yu, G. (2004). Perception, Practice
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second or foreign language teachers. Asian EFL Journal, 6(4).

 

 

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