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THAILAND ON GLOBAL STAGE
Thailands Education to Experience a Significant Change toward the ASEAN Community

7 June 2013 (Readers 838)
 
Thailands basic education is likely to experience a significant change as the country moves toward the ASEAN Community in 2015.

The Secretary-General of the Office of the Basic Education Commission Mr. Chinnapat Bhumirat has suggested that successful education management practices in certain local areas should be spread, so that other areas would adopt it as a model.

Speaking at a seminar on direction of basic education management in the future, Mr. Chinnapat said that the Office of the Basic Education Commission is responsible for more than seven million schoolchildren and 400,000 teachers.

A recent meeting of the House Committee on Education proposed that education management in the country be handled in a more balanced manner. The question is how to reduce classroom time and increase thinking-analytical skills among students.

Concerning the move to adjust academic term periods in Thailand to conform to other countries in ASEAN, Mr. Chinnapat said that the Office of the Basic Education Commission conducted a survey of people involved in December 2012. The survey shows that most respondents agreed that the first school term date should be changed from 16 May to 10 June. The Office of the Basic Education Commission is ready to introduce the change in the 2014 academic year.

The Office of the Higher Education Commission has asked educational institutions under its supervision to change their academic schedule for the beginning of the 2014 semester from June to August or September, like other ASEAN countries. Some institutions have already adjusted their academic calendar in accordance with that of other ASEAN partners.

The Office of the Vocational Education Commission has also conducted a study on the change to the academic calendar. The study indicates that the change has had no impact on teaching and learning in vocational colleges under its supervision.

Meanwhile, Mahidol University has now operated Mahidol University International Demonstration School to prepare Thai students for the ASEAN Community and beyond. This new international school is located at Mahidol University Salaya Campus in Nakhon Pathom province.

Founded in 2013, with the vision to be recognized worldwide as a model of international demonstration school, Mahidol University International Demonstration School has a mission to provide high quality life-skills based education to enable students to live happily in a global society and to enter universities of their choices, in and outside Thailand. It is set to open in September 2013 for grade 10 and accept students for grades 11 and 12 by 2014. Its curriculum is based on the Thailands Ministry of Education and Western Association of Schools and Colleges.


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