Have you ever read the biography of Imam Malik, friends? He is one of the four schools of jurisprudence (al madhahib al arbaah) in Islamic teaching, he was known with his traditional thinking. According to various data gotten by author, Imam Malik just lived in a city, Medina. It was different with the other scholars who explored many cities in their journey. He just sometimes went to Mecca to do the pilgrimage (hajj). Starting from Imam Malik’s life history which closed with education, he was taught by his mother to respect and dedicate to the science. When Malik was child, his mother commanded him to wear the best clothes and use the best perfume when studying and attending the place of science (majlis al ilm). By some years, Malik was the figure who really wanted to dedicate his life to the science, without any compromises in sheen of world wealth. Even, till the half end of his life, his living cost was paid by the government. He had still studied till the end of his life.
But, the most important thing to the author is Imam Malik has a soul of dedication, for the science, it is also known as “intellectual dedication” in our era. This is being an expensive thing for the scholars (ashhabul ilm), whoever gets and has sciences. The dedication will be the proof of purity and the useful of the science (al-ilm al-manfaat). Of course, it will be more important and needed by our education system, in our nation, Indonesia.
If we remember about the lack of awareness of teacher, so it is reasonable if in our country, Indonesia, the government is considered fail in educating the nation. There is no doubt, the rank of Indonesia education in the world comes out 100 can be the real proof. Whereas the others are unpredictable, US for example just stand in number 34. Then, which nation is number one?
The answer is Finland. Have you hear that name, friends? I mean it was not famous name as famous as US, England, or Germany. Of course, a nation located and registered in north Europe is been the main spotlight by many nations now. Not just the citizen media, but also electronic and online media have been busy to talk over about education in Finland. Of course, it appears a big question, “which system used by Finland and how to apply it?” Generally there are three principal things construct Finland Educational system.
The first, free education. Of course this model is absolutely needed by a ‘great’ education system. This is also applied in many Europe and advanced nations. If we compare them, Australia will be a sample which gives many scholarship, especially to Indonesia. That is proved, from data gotten by author, the total number of scholarship (scholar and master) is tended to increase. For example, Indonesia in this year get more than 300 scholarship quota for master program in the nation where Kangaroo live.
The second, free studying system. Author means that a student is not an education object-and the teacher is the subject. But, he is also a subject. The practicing of this basic understanding is a student may choose and determine what will be studied. Easily, this concept refuses the generalization of curriculum between a student and others. This system is also practiced by many advanced nations, but Indonesian government never does more till now. A nation, France for example, we can find many schools and colleges within a special curriculum, like art, drawing, music, fashion, design, etc. One of them, Universite d’ Paris Sorbonne gives many scholarships for the other nations in graphic design and architecture program.
The third, dedication awareness. Author’s opinion, this is more important. Here, the teachers are tested their sincerity and capability. The teacher must awake that they are not who need a job or salary. The fact said that in Finlandia, most of teachers are a master/magister, include in elementary school, lower elementary school, and senior high school.
The plus value for the teacher looks in the third point, there is an awareness to dedicate. The dedication for the science which applied to an education system will be the obligation for every teacher there. Logically, studying in Finland is free which the education cost is paid by the government. So, for them, it is a big sin if they don’t dedicate to the nation, in education, after they ‘reach and get’ what they want. In this case, the dedication doesn’t mean ‘for money’ or because of moral force, but it means to the aspiring and purpose of state, educating nation.
Of course, this dedication is not only done by someone after becoming a teacher. But, conceptually, they must dedicate their selves for the education starting the early, i.e. when someone still studies. A managed ‘teaching’ in Finland is each student is obligated to be learned the moral education, moral value. The pressure about the character education is also applied to strengthen mentality and personality of students in every various study.
From here, there are no excessive if the author compares those facts with this nation’s aspiring. The aspiring written in State Basic Laws 1945 (UUD ’45), there is “to protect all of Indonesian people, prosper and educate the nation.” This system-mentioned above-is so needed to be planted in the soul of every student and teacher in Indonesia.
The collaboration and application of this system will appear two understanding. In the first, the teacher will focus himself to purely fight for the nation fate, which has many ‘illiterate’ people. The result is lifting up the children in unknown region from the low, decrease and foreign civilization.
The second, in the other side, student can really aware that all of things they try to find are not useless, just for a job/money. But, everything they get, will be back to him and become the material for life and useful to others.
The purpose is absolutely into the future, the quality of Indonesian education can be increased and produced the hi-quality human resource. In the end, this nation will increase and not (stopped) become a developing nation, but a developed nation.
At the end of this paper, let’s flash back to the history of Imam Malik. When he was closed to the end of his life, Imam Malik made a great work which is famous until now, al-Muwatta. It was one of his big dedication for intellectual in the world civilization, especially Islam. Even, one of his student, al-Syafii said, “If I must choose the book after Quran, so I choose al-Muwatta.”
(this article was published in Hammasa, Juli 2013).