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ksj_cool
07-02-2006, 04:50 PM
The Sun newpapers carried an article which is about a parent who successfully sued and won the case against a Kumon centre in Subang Jaya. Wonder which centre was this? She had claimed that her son's performance never improved after the Kumon training!

So any of you guys feel the same way?

SunwayKid
07-02-2006, 05:35 PM
Reported in the Star as USJ4. If you can find medallists from the USJ4 centre, how to say instructor no good? Besides, the worksheets are all preset.

Improved or not - very subjective lah. What I understand is that Kumon is advertised as learning at your child's speed. If the child does not do the worksheet conscientiously everyday, how to improve? And parents are pissed off because of the many repeats when their child can't hit the target.

On the other hand, if child complete too fast with no repeats, how the centre going to make money. After all, Kumon is a business, not a charitable organisation.

pcyeoh
07-02-2006, 05:55 PM
I happen to know Puan Hazlinda (she and the husband gave the MB and his entourage of EXCO members a hard time when the MB came to Subang Jaya to "meet the people" session) and I admire her for fighting Kumon all the way. As what the learned judge said, "it was high time consumers were protected from producers of goods and services."


The Star
Tuesday February 7, 2006

Court won’t overrule tribunal

By RAPHAEL WONG

PUTRAJAYA: Awards by the Consumer Claims Tribunal should not be overturned unless there is a clear-cut error, the Court of Appeal has held.

The court should be slow in interfering with decisions of the tribunal as it was created by Parliament with the intention to protect consumers, said Court of Appeal Justice Gopal Sri Ram.

“If we start injecting common law, contract law and the various other laws, it would be like us taking a parang and chopping what Parliament intended,” he said, adding that the tribunal applied consumer law, which was based on equity and justice.

“Unless there is a clear-cut error, we will leave the award alone.”

He said this when he and Court of Appeal Justices Hashim Mohd Yusoff and Mohd Noor Abdullah unanimously restored the Consumer Claims Tribunal award given to a freelance language teacher, who was dissatisfied with the quality of teaching and instruction provided to her children by a Kumon Method of Learning Centre in Selangor.

Justice Sri Ram said it was high time consumers were protected from producers of goods and services.

“You can get blood from stone or even life back from God but you will get no money back from the trader. This kind of bad trading practice must cease, he said.

“Parliament got fed up, and that is why it created a special tribunal.”

The three-men bench unanimously set aside a High Court order to quash the Tribunal’s decision to award 41-year-old Hazlinda Hamzah RM4,070 on her claim of being “short-changed” by the Kumon centre.

“We are satisfied the learned judge was wrong in this case and, for the reasons which will be given in due course, this appeal is allowed,” Justice Sri Ram said.

On the submission by Kumon counsel Y.T. Ling that the written decision by former tribunal chairman Eddie Yeoh – given after the High Court wrote several letters to him – was an afterthought, Justice Sri Ram said: “That is a very serious allegation against a very senior and respectable public officer. Eddie Yeoh has served the Government with distinction.”

When Ling submitted that there were no findings by the tribunal, Justice Sri Ram interjected: “The tribunal found that Kumon gave bad service. The fact that this lady (Hazlinda) filed a complaint at the Tribunal shows that she’s a civic-conscious and responsible citizen.”

On Feb 21, 2001, Hazlinda, 41, enrolled her three children in the Kumon centre in USJ4, but 23 months later, she withdrew her children and enrolled them in another centre.

She found many discrepancies between the quality of teaching and instruction of the first centre and that of the second.

On March 26, 2003, Hazlinda filed a complaint against Kumon with the tribunal and her grouses included the quality of service of the first centre she had enrolled her children in.

She asked for the return of course fees totalling RM7,740 that she paid for her three children, as well as costs.

About a month later, the Tribunal allowed Hazlinda’s claim and ordered Kumon to pay her 50% of the fees and RM200 costs, for a total of RM4,070.

However, on May 24, 2004, the High Court allowed Kumon’s application for a judicial review and quashed the tribunal’s decision.

http://www.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2006/2/7/nation/13316717&sec=nation

jasonbhlee
08-02-2006, 09:15 AM
Justice Gopal Sri Ram is thetype of judge we need!!

idolfan
08-02-2006, 02:39 PM
""On Feb 21, 2001, Hazlinda, 41, enrolled her three children in the Kumon centre in USJ4, but 23 months later, she withdrew her children and enrolled them in another centre.

She found many discrepancies between the quality of teaching and instruction of the first centre and that of the second.

On March 26, 2003, Hazlinda filed a complaint against Kumon with the tribunal and her grouses included the quality of service of the first centre she had enrolled her children in. ""




interesting..I may be wrong but I think most centres practise very little "teaching and instruction" because of high staff turnover. They would just ensure the child submits his worksheets and maybe do some flashcards.

My son did it for two years till he was able to multiply and divide with ease. I decided to stop because I thought he needed better understanding of concepts rather than rote learning.

I think Kumon is a good system to get the basic skills but dun expect the centre to have dedicated "teachers".. if parents are very involved the child should benefit. In any case i think the benefits are greater for "slower" children and those who are "brighter".

ameer shah
08-02-2006, 09:17 PM
pararents send child to kumon/tuition hoping that the child would grew up and be smarter than the parents...:)

but then majority of parents do not understand the underlying concept of kumon/tuition and start blaming the centre for it (biasa lah, who wants to blame own kids, rite)....

if there is a kumon/tuition centre that can make children grow smart "overnight", i think those centres biggest customer group must be ..... THE PARENTS lah.........

ha ha ha ha

Kenneth20
08-02-2006, 09:40 PM
i think the kid gets kuman lah..haha

joker2107
08-02-2006, 11:29 PM
pc, we know d same woman - someone u must never get on d other side of. giving hard time, she is most capable of. call it super high expectations or fighting spirit whatever. quite an intellectual person. a multi linguist too if i believe.

d judgement may b jolly well what d hon. justice sri ram said it shud b. its most welcomed. but i m sure many practisioners will hv some questions 4 d grounds of d verdict. will this apply to all other tribunals and courts set up by parliament or other authority - eg housing tribunal, small claims court, traffics courts, dbkl magistrates court?

i dont think d centre will go 2 d federal court but if they do i wud not place my stake on a similar judgement. may d case rest n consumers get their just dues.

pcyeoh
09-02-2006, 11:38 AM
The SUN
7th February 2006


Sri Ram raps lawyer for "monstrous suggestion" in matrimonial assets division appeal

PUTRAJAYA: The Court of Appeal on Feb 7, 2006, rapped a lawyer for suggesting selling two houses and keeping one for his client, thus leaving the client's wife and daughter without a roof.

Justice Datuk Gopal Sri Ram said: "So he wants to sell the Taman Maluri house and keep the Taman Cuepacs house and put his wife and daughter on the street and give them an umbrella for shelter. This is a monstrous suggestion."

The court then ordered that the three properties be sold and each party to get half share of the sale of proceeds.

Sri Ram made the remarks when allowing a woman's appeal against a High Court decision in dividing the matrimonial assets which she claimed were not properly divided, but were distributed instead.

Sri Ram, Datuk Hashim Mohamed Yusoff and Datuk Mohamed Noor Abdullah who heard the appeal not only varied the order made by High Court judge Datuk Faiza Thamby Chik but also disagreed with the way the trial judge had distributed the assets.

"We agree with the counsel's submission and therefore we affirm part of the High Court order," said Sri Ram.

Francis D' Cruz, counsel for the appellant K.Remala Devi, submitted that Section 76 of the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976 gave the court the power to order the division of assets acquired by the husband and wife during their marriage by their joint effort, and not to distribute the assets.

Remala, 40, and the respondent, S.Ganison, 50, who were married in1980, initiated the divorce proceedings in the High Court in 2003 and sought an order for the division of their matrimonial assets.

The assets are two houses in Taman Maluri and Taman Cuepacs, Cheras, Scott Villa Condominium in Brickfields and an optical business run by the wife.

On Dec 7, 2004, the High Court ordered that as the business remained with Remala, the two houses in Taman Maluri and Taman Cuepacs would be given to Ganison while the condominum would be sold and the proceeds divided equally between them.

"We want all the property to be divided equally, except for the business, we agree that it should remain with the wife. Regarding the houses, her part in looking after the home should be considered," D'Cruz submitted.

"Yes, the husband builds the house, the wife makes it a home," Sri Ram agreed.

D'Cruz suggested that the house in Taman Maluri be given to the only daughter, aged 24, while the other two properties be sold and the proceeds divided equally between the couple.

However, Ganison's counsel, Faridah Abrahim, said that the house in Taman Maluri and the condominum should be sold and each party be entitled to half share of the sale proceeds, while the house in Taman Cuepacs should remain with the husband.

The suggestion sparked Sri Ram to respond with the remarks.

He then affirmed the High Court order that the business remained with Remala. No order was made to costs.

http://www.sun2surf.com/article.cfm?id=12901

SunwayKid
09-02-2006, 12:01 PM
Like that also can!!

Sell 3 properties and divide equally but the business remain with the wife! I would like to understand the logic in that which was not reported. Probably there were no joint effort in developing the business?

La Vida Loca
09-02-2006, 01:15 PM
Like that also can!!

Sell 3 properties and divide equally but the business remain with the wife! I would like to understand the logic in that which was not reported. Probably there were no joint effort in developing the business?
The wife is an ophthalmologist and the husband a civil servant, clearly he cannot be involved in running or owning a business, the fact that he stake a claim on it is already a mistake on his part.

SunwayKid
09-02-2006, 01:55 PM
Oh I see.

They can't be staying in 3 houses, so I presume the other 2 are investments which the wife do not need to make it a home. If those investments has been made with the husband's income, would the wife still be entitled to a share?

Similarly, while it is clear that the wife, being an opthmalogist is running the business, if the husband has made an initial investment in the business, would he then be entitled to a share? :)

pcyeoh
09-02-2006, 02:23 PM
I believe even if the the husband has made some initial investment in the business, it still considered as matrimonial asset so it has to be equally divided unless it is specified in the pre nuptial agreement that the wife cannot have any share of that assets. In this particular case, the husband has agreed that she gets everything since he knows nuts about the business and most probably also could not see (pun included) any value in the business. So when this dispute went to the Appeal Court, the judges just maintain the status quo with regards to the business. But for everything else and since the houses are matrimonial assets (acquired during their marriage) , the Appeal Court considers it as fair and equitable that everything is splitted into half and the only way to do it is to split the value by way of sale rather than the Ali Baba style, Taman Maluri for you and Taman Cuepacs one for me. As for the Scott Villa Condominium, let us saw it into two - you take the ceiling, I take the floor.

Teeque
09-02-2006, 06:04 PM
With regards to the Kumon case, it is a dangerous precedent here for Sri Ram's decision.

We do not hv the full facts of the judgement besides what is reported. And the gist here is that the kids did not improve after attending Kumon classes. This can be very ambigous and subjective.

All Kumon centres everywhere and nationwide utilises the same instructional methods and materials in a patented methodology named after its founder. Irregardless of language, place and personnel, this intructional method can be applied anywhere with the intention to enhance language understanding and mathematical abilities.

Now, since 1 centre can be taken to court and won, what is stopping the other similar centres frm being subjected to the same action? Isnt it the same standardised methodology and application in all the other centres? And how can you prove that a child did not improve BECAUSE of Kumon and not other factors?

I feel this judgement may hv a negative bearing on the many franchised products and services in our country. Any thoughts?

SunwayKid
09-02-2006, 06:18 PM
.......................
I feel this judgement may hv a negative bearing on the many franchised products and services in our country. Any thoughts?

My sentiments exactly. Just as what I said earlier in the thread, it is very subjective. There are medallists (top scorers in Kumon) coming from that centre and if you have a slow but creative child, who doesn't have the aptitude for rote learning and takes a long time to progress, is it the centre's fault?

Next, you will have music centres being sued because their parents believe their child should progress faster in their piano exams but do not possess the creativity to do so. Instead, blame it on the teacher and the centre. Or kindergardens or can we sue the gormen for different teaching quality in different schools. Would the child do better in a prestigious school compared against one in an estate?

I can understand if it is something tangible, e.g. a chair where the workmanship is different at different outlets but we are talking something subjective like Education.

FineTuned
09-02-2006, 07:03 PM
Can I sue my son's SMK school if I think the school's not helping him reach his full potential? After so many years of education, he still isn't showing signs of becoming an Einstein......

Rocky19
09-02-2006, 08:50 PM
Can I sue my son's SMK school if I think the school's not helping him reach his full potential? After so many years of education, he still isn't showing signs of becoming an Einstein......
yes if they made that claim when you enrolled your son and promised that he will be like Einstein or in the ad, they said students there will become Einstein. :cool:

FineTuned
09-02-2006, 09:23 PM
yes if they made that claim....
sigh, that lets them off i guess......

joker2107
10-02-2006, 12:54 AM
35 yrs ago i tries 2 study accountancy. lead me 2 practice my swearing skills. i cursed and swore at my lecturers 4 being unable 2 make my competent intellect comprehend d juggling of numbers. but all those pretty lass luved d lessons and adored d lecturers. i quit. armed with data nterminology n no knowledge i got into a bookkeeping job. shortly later i tried 2 study again - guess what - i was branded "accounts prof".

you'll never walk alone

mum
10-02-2006, 09:28 AM
undefined
It sure was interesting to read about the comments and critics made but the complainant complained about the number of worksheets given. The brochure promised 5 - 10 sheets a day but the centre only gave two sheets a day. The children were only in kindergarten and early primary; in a non kebangsaan school. The complain was for not supplying as promised. The 2 kids have finished their UPSR without the centre's assistance and they still got thru with A's / B's bearing in mind the Maths exam was in Mandarin. The sheets are still available for viewing. On top of that, the USJ 11 centre gave 10 sheets, thus the comparison on the inconsistencies practised by the instructors of such a renowned centre in name and franchise expectations. These kids do take up piano lessons too since the age of four and they are doing well; one plays the clarinet, the other the flute and the last still plays the piano.
Would you still pay full amount if you were shortchanged of teaching material and tools? The piano lessons last for an hour, would you not compalin and ask for a refund if they only lasted for 30 or 45 minutes? Fees are not cheap. We pay premium fees for premium quality services! Don't you agree? Would you pay the price of a BMW 3 series for a Proton Perdana?
Wow, too hefty a price to pay for 10 sheets or even 5, just to be delivered 2 or 3 a day! I guess there is a price to being transparent, truthful and honest. There is surely no one out there who would protect a cheat, who cheats intentionally, right?

SunwayKid
10-02-2006, 10:16 AM
Thanks Mum, for the facts on the case.

I have seen other Mums wanting to strangle these Kumon instructors for giving their child 5 sheets or repeating those worksheets constantly. For 2-3 sheets, Mr Toru Kumon and his instructors are seriously asking for trouble.

For those uninitiated, a maximum of 10 worksheets is given a day to the child for completion. If the instructor find that the child can't complete the 10 worksheets within the targeted time, he/she will reduce the no of worksheets corresponding to what the child is capable of and repeating these worksheets until the child is comfortable with them before proceeding to the next level. The same rigmarole happens in the next level etc etc.

While there is a time factor which decide whether a child can proceed to the next level, no objective method is employed to decide on the no of worksheets to be given and how often repeated - it is left to the instructor. This, IMHO, is the crux of the problem.

mum
10-02-2006, 03:07 PM
:)
Thanks Mum, for the facts on the case.

I have seen other Mums wanting to strangle these Kumon instructors for giving their child 5 sheets or repeating those worksheets constantly. For 2-3 sheets, Mr Toru Kumon and his instructors are seriously asking for trouble.

For those uninitiated, a maximum of 10 worksheets is given a day to the child for completion. If the instructor find that the child can't complete the 10 worksheets within the targeted time, he/she will reduce the no of worksheets corresponding to what the child is capable of and repeating these worksheets until the child is comfortable with them before proceeding to the next level. The same rigmarole happens in the next level etc etc.

While there is a time factor which decide whether a child can proceed to the next level, no objective method is employed to decide on the no of worksheets to be given and how often repeated - it is left to the instructor. This, IMHO, is the crux of the problem.

That is true and was all well taken into account then. However, this particular instructor always praised the children and insisted that they were amongst the best. When the same children were sent to the other centre in USJ 11, they were given the maximum 10 sheets because they could cope with them. Instructors have to be dedicated and commited, afterall they were paid RM120 per subject then for two short interactions at the centres per week.

If they decide to take an action in reducing the sheets due to certain reasons and especially when it is lower than the minimum sales promise bid, they ought to explain to the parents and assure a consent for this. Otherwise it would be a problem for many. Some parents prefer their children to enjoy their childhood and decide their play times themselves whilst some others prefer to make a set time table for their children's daily activities.

The STAR paper today carried the story of a reader writing to the editor about his / her plight after the High Court quashed the Tribunal Award he / she had been awarded with in 2005. To add salt to the wound the vendors insisted on an apology letter for taking them to the Tribunal earlier. Read about it, there are many consumers out there in this country, cheated and humiliated even after they pay for the goods and services but with deliveries "short' of the promised.

As long as the services or product providers are truthful and honest, the consumers; who have to be burdened by the raising costs of living, in deterioration of its standards eventually,would not simply complain. It takes a lot of energy and emotional strength to fight for your rights! Especially after you had notified the vendors of its weaknesses, an dthey refuse to listen. I don't think many of us can accept the phrase, "Too bad, it happened to you too. This is normal!" without some effort to correct the wrong.

Lastly, we wouldn't want to cheat others into paying us for more than what we had delivered contractually, right? :)

jtl
11-02-2006, 12:29 AM
undefined
It sure was interesting to read about the comments and critics made but the complainant complained about the number of worksheets given. The brochure promised 5 - 10 sheets a day but the centre only gave two sheets a day.

I'm in a curious mood today... If this was the case, why did the parent withdraw the kids only after 23 months? That's almost 2 years. Did the parent not notice that only 2 worksheets were being given out? :confused:

joker2107
11-02-2006, 02:03 AM
I'm in a curious mood today... If this was the case, why did the parent withdraw the kids only after 23 months? That's almost 2 years. Did the parent not notice that only 2 worksheets were being given out? :confused:

sek kow poon? or like in pck lingo, kiasu lah jiak kow sing :D .

Teeque
11-02-2006, 02:19 AM
To be fair and transparent abt it, the defendent shld be allowed to explain their situation here. As it is, only the plaintiff has told her side of the story. As it is, there exist a couple of subjectivity here that prompts further questions. And since we are not able to hear the other side of the story, i guess it is pointless to carry this discussion any further.

mum
11-02-2006, 10:15 AM
I'm in a curious mood today... If this was the case, why did the parent withdraw the kids only after 23 months? That's almost 2 years. Did the parent not notice that only 2 worksheets were being given out? :confused:

It took two years to realise because parents started to talk. We had to investigate and think of ways to prove the inefficiencies. Brochures had to be recollected, verified of their authenticities. It takes someone long in business to start thinking of new ways and methods to dodge giving the best in business. At the entrance stage the centre had just opened for a month or two. "New broom sweeps clean," as the saying goes.

Two cases were brought against that centre anyway. One received the Tribunal Award but the other did not, because there was no comparison made between two centres in the second case. The defendant had all the time in an eight hour long hearing to present facts to satisfy the findings of the Tribunal judge. I guess it is natural for those who were not there at the hearing to feel the losing party wronged. At the High Court, the centre was the victor and they had a chance to further prove their case in the Appeal's cpurt. Their lawyers arbitrated for 40 full minutes in front of three judges! What do you say to that? Next time do take the preciuos opportunity to be part of an open court hearing and consider the facts fairly.

I believe it would do a good deal of help if all of you and many of us others attend the Tribunal hearings from time to timeto hear the frustrations of consumers. It looks like here, the complainant is to be blamed but the centre protected even of their numerous wrong doings!

Good luck to all of you as consumers; we are consumers in our every day life without fail, even if you were a big and mighty trader by the longer part of day. Justice must prevail. When you are the victim and until today such monies have yet to be paid back; after 4 years, would you still keep quiet and be happy? In fact you would have lost all faith in justice and the energy to even think about it.

The complainants are people who stick to a service for long term. Music teachers for umpteen years, the whole family through and tuition tutors the same ways too. Trust and honesty goes a long way you know. No one does this for a living you know; the costs are high, the deposits to the Appeal's Court must be paid, and affidavits were done by themselves! Ta-ta and enjoy life as a CONSUMER!!! ;)

tempuadua
14-02-2006, 01:11 AM
With regards to the Kumon case, it is a dangerous precedent here for Sri Ram's decision.

We do not hv the full facts of the judgement besides what is reported. And the gist here is that the kids did not improve after attending Kumon classes. This can be very ambigous and subjective.

All Kumon centres everywhere and nationwide utilises the same instructional methods and materials in a patented methodology named after its founder. Irregardless of language, place and personnel, this intructional method can be applied anywhere with the intention to enhance language understanding and mathematical abilities.

Now, since 1 centre can be taken to court and won, what is stopping the other similar centres frm being subjected to the same action? Isnt it the same standardised methodology and application in all the other centres? And how can you prove that a child did not improve BECAUSE of Kumon and not other factors?

I feel this judgement may hv a negative bearing on the many franchised products and services in our country. Any thoughts?
May be this case will encourage centres like Kumon to be more specific and careful with the wordings of their advertisement/ brochures. If this happen, definitely both vendors and consumers will benefit. Consumers can make an informed decision which will enable them to make the appropriate choice (btw, kumon isn't the only one in this business).

ksj_cool
14-02-2006, 09:01 AM
Those days we never had Kumon, but children were getting As for their maths at all levels, so why do we even need this money making thing called Kumon?