Welcoming Speech at Khalifah Model School (Secondary) Speech Day 2014

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Thank you MCs, firstly allow me to express my appreciation to all committee members and volunteers among teachers, staffs and students of KMSS. Special thanks to Prof. Dr. Norhani Mohidin, for your kindness to be with us in this meaningful day. All family members of Khalifah School, primary and secondary, parents, guests, and especially our beloved students, sons and daughters, the Khalifah of Allah.

Alhamdulillah, this is our second time to organize our Speech Day; to conclude our second year we operate KMSS. Each year, we celebrate achievement, progress, transformation, and all forms of goodness. KMSS is not just another Islamic school, not just another school. It is the school, the school we believe as how a school should be, the school that upholds the true meaning of education, all sense of tarbiyyah, ta’lim, tadris, tilawah, tazkiyah and most importantly, the ta’dib.

Our beloved Prophet Muhammad PBUH said:

Addabanī Rabbī fa Ahsana Ta’dībī

“My Lord Educated Me and So Made My Education Most Excellent”

The school has many limitations. The major one is the physical limitation. We know, the temporary building is not the best place to be considered as a school. We struggle to achieve our dream of having the permanent campus ready as soon as possible, Insha-Allah. But the true sense of education can be understood from the struggle demonstrated by Sheikh Suleyman Hilmi Tunahan at the beginning of the 20th century when Ottoman Empire came to its end.

Sheikh Suleyman Hilmi Tunahan believed, no matter what happened to the ummah, education must continue. His school was destroyed by the regime, but that did not stop them from learning. They moved from one place to another, ‘pretending’ to work as farmers. During the daytime, they went to the farms and worked there. At night they studied. When the regime came to ambush them, they left the farm and move to another, simply to ensure the process of learning, the education, continue.

This is the real meaning of education, which makes the world flat, boundaryless, and dismiss all sorts of limitations.

The second limitation is our experience. Two years in operation, some might question our intention. Do you really want to establish a school? ‘Betul ke’? Was is ‘saja-saja’? How the future is going to be? Can we trust you?

Despite all the limitations, it all goes back to the way we perceive it. Do not overlook the positive sides of all these limitations. We are new, but that also means we are fresh, full of surprises, many good ones, sometimes the bad ones. We are independent, we are brave, we are ambitious, and perhaps, sometimes we are ‘crazy’ too! No doubt about it.

What we know is, we do have an accurate world view – we know the Creator, the creation and the connection between them. This reflects the way we perceive education. It is not the world that shapes our education, but we use our education to shape the world. We shape our civilization according to the grand design of the Creator. And among all the existence in this universe, we believe that human is the centre among the creations. We respect the creation of human being by dealing with them using the law of learning, which the Creator embedded in our fitrah. That is what we call the Khalifah Method. Our education is motivating, and positive. Therefore, we remove all demotivating factors, and struggle to prevent negativity from our mind, our attitude, our language, our life. We have enough negativities from the surrounding. We don’t want the negativities to influence the way we see ourselves, people around us, and the physical surrounding. We are the khalifah of Allah, in all its meaning.

Being the Khalifah of Allah, we think and plan beyond exams, beyond credit hours, beyond careers, beyond all temporary needs. Being khalifah sets four important characters to our education:

  1. We believe that our students are individually unique
  2. Therefore, each of them is special, and it is the duty of the education to help them discover their uniqueness and speciality.
  3. We have divine purpose driven life.
  4. Our mindset is the mindset of giving, more than taking opportunity. The mindset of taking benefits from our existence in this world makes us selfish, we think nothing to contribute and when the time comes, we are dead when we die. The mindset of giving is so powerful. We became selfless, we always want to contribute and leave legacies, and when we die, we move to the eternal live, as long as the legacies are benefitted by the coming generations.

To achieve that, we are now working all around the clock for 2015 curriculum transformation. We need a benchmark, so we are heading towards the Cambridge school standard of education, which at least have these 4 characters:

  • Acknowledge the individuality and uniqueness of the students
  • Learner-centered education
  • Progressive classroom
  • Clear vision and mission

I am confident and proud to say that our school is positively heading towards that, which does not only comply to the standard of the Cambridge schools, but most importantly, that is how a Khalifah School should be, asobta al-fitrah!

I also want to express my personal feelings toward our late founder of Khalifah School, al-Marhum Prof Muhammad al-Mahdi Jenkins. I didn’t get the chance to meet him, and very late at knowing him. But I read his books everyday, not that I read a lot, but his books are not easy to digest. I am amazed with the fact that from Australia where he was born, to USA he lived and discovered his physics and psycholog, he travelled around the world to search for meaning, and finally chose Malaysia to be his final home, and left his legacy to us, here. This is not his plan, not our plan. It is the plan of Allah. And to think that, it became such a burden on our shoulder to fulfill his dream. Only when I realize that it is not just his dream, by my dream too, the burden turned into the best job I have in my entire life. The ummah needs his idea to be made into a system, and Khalifah Method must not perceived only to cater the needs of our local education, but we want the goodness to spread all around the world. Insha-Allah.

Dream… we are dreamer, but we fight to manifest our dream.

Thank you parents for your continuous support.

Thank you teachers and staffs, the best team we have so far

Thank you Principal, Ustaz Qayyum for being such a great leader for our school, and a special friend and brother to me.

Thank you everyone for everything.

My very special thank you to our beloved sons and daughters, our Khalifah, you are the beacon of hope for this ummah, stay strong, stay smart, stay safe, and enjoy the day, and the upcoming holiday.

We love you.

I end my speech by quoting from ‘Waiting for Superman’, a documentary on the crisis of American public education today:

“The fate of our country wont be decided on a battlefield. It will be determined in a classroom!”


Academic Director, KMSS