The Ministry of Education is working out a program named “English Speaking Year 2012” for next year. The press conference to announce the program’s opening is scheduled for 26 December 2011 at 9:30 a.m. at the Ministry of Education.
The English Speaking Year 2012 program aims to make Thailand ready to be a part of the ASEAN Community in 2015, because the English language is a major medium of communication among ASEAN member countries. Also, the program will raise Thai people’s awareness of ASEAN.
This program will be initiated in schools and involve plenty of academic activities. These activities will let teachers and students have opportunities to speak English and build up their confidence in using it without excessive concern about grammatical errors.
According to Minister of Education Woravat Auapinyakul, Thailand is becoming part of the ASEAN Community in 2015, so English must play a key role in communication for Thais. The Ministry of Education will urge and support all schools and universities to place more emphasis on communication in English.
Also, Mr. Woravat said that one day a week teachers and students should do academic activities together by speaking in English. They may include setting up an English corner in a school and English guide training. The Ministry of Education will provide an English preparation course for teachers as well.
Dr. Sasithara Pichaichannarong, Permanent Secretary for Education, said that the program of English Speaking Year 2012 would begin with pilot schools that are ready to implement the proposals. It will be extended to other places so that most Thais will be able to communicate in English.
Dr. Sasithara also added that the Ministry has to improve teachers’ skills in using English, both in communicating and teaching English effectively. It will work closely with embassies, foreign organizations, and representatives from language institutes such as AUA and the British Council.
For further information, please contact the Ministry of Education at Tel. 1579.