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  1. #1
    Mid
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    Thailand : English to be made 2nd language in schools

    English to be made 2nd language in schools
    7/10/2010

    The Education Ministry plans to declare English the second language for teaching and learning in schools with an aim to enable Thai people of the new generation to communicate with other people in Asean and world communities in English, Chinaworn Boonyakiat said on Thursday.

    The education minister said he had discussed this matter with Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva and Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij.

    A plan to develop learning and teaching in English is being drafted by the Office of the Basic Education Commission (OBEC), he said.

    Mr Chinaworn said in order to successfully carry out the plan it is necessary to have foreign teachers from countries using English as the mother language for all schools for Mathayom 4-6 level (Grades 10-12).

    Schools for Mathayom 1-3 level (Grade 7-9) should at least have Thai teachers majoring in English.

    Elementary schools should also have more English teachers, he said.
    "After having enough foreign teachers and Thai teachers majoring in English, schools will then be able to arrange an English programme," he said.

    Mr Chinaworn said the OBEC will decide how many foreign teachers are needed, the Finance Ministry will be asked to provide budgetary support, and the Foreign Ministry will be asked to help recruit foreign teachers.

    "We have eyed American teachers who are retired under an early retirement programme," he said.

    Mr Chinaworn said the ministry has tentatively set Oct 22 to declare English second language in schools.

    bangkokpost.com

  2. #2
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    Should have it as the first language. Might not all end up as thick as pig-shit then.

  3. #3
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    another country the froggies wont have for a 2nd language,

  4. #4
    Thailand Expat superman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mid
    "We have eyed American teachers who are retired under an early retirement programme,"
    For what ? They don't know English either.

  5. #5
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    Things Thailand really needs :

    1) More hairdressers
    2) More TEFLers
    3) More Som Tam vendors
    4) More pickups and Fortunas
    5) More expat forums

    Ah....the list is endless

  6. #6
    FarangRed
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    Fuking does my head in listening to Thais with a fuking mericano accent

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mid
    "We have eyed American teachers who are retired under an early retirement programme," he said.
    I should imagine they will be queuing up for these 20k baht a month jobs.

  8. #8
    Thailand Expat Boon Mee's Avatar
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    It's OK for yáll that live in or around the Farang gettos but I reckon that not one swinging-dick out where I live can speak a word of English. That's including Muang Suphan too...

  9. #9
    Member corvettelover's Avatar
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    and claiming they will be using thais that have english degrees to teach in schools of course they might have to pass an exam

  10. #10
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    Should be learning Chinese

  11. #11
    Have you got any cheese Thetyim's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dirtydog
    I should imagine they will be queuing up for these 20k baht a month jobs.
    It gets worse, each district is required to have at least one teacher with a Phd

  12. #12
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    Thai home-grown PhDs are a joke. I spent five years in a leading university. I knew PhDs who couldn't compose a simple summary without making mistakes. Most of them had their theses written by, or heavily edited by, farangs. Later, some of these Thais became very pompous, and also got annoyed when natives corrected their basic mistakes.

    To add balance, I should add that I once met an American who had a PhD from the University of Mongolia (or someplace). Same story.

  13. #13
    Mid
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    Thailand not ready to upgrade English
    Monday, October 11, 2010

    PHUKET: It's too soon to declare English as Thailand's second language for teaching in schools, says Tongthong Chandransu, secretary-general of the Office of the Education Council (OEC).

    News reports late last week said the Education Ministry planned to declare on October 22 that English is officially the second language for teaching in Thai schools.

    But Tongthong denied there would be declarations related to the issue on October 22.

    "The education reform policy committee, chaired by Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva, has discussed improving or upgrading English language teaching in educational institutions. But the committee has not yet reached a conclusion on how to develop the teaching," Tongthong said.

    He was not sure if there was confusion caused by the news reports on the issue.

    He said the issue to be announced on October 22 would be about developing student quality by allocating 30% of their study time to activities outside classrooms.

    "To initiate a nationwide English language teaching improvement scheme is a big issue. We need to prepare enough basic structure – like instructional tools, technology and qualified teachers – as well as arrange funds, which will take a long time."

    He said the PM and Finance Minister Korn Chatikavanij have agreed in principle to upgrade the quality of English language instruction and would support the scheme.

    "We need to clarify the term to be used when referring to the language teaching improvement scheme, to prevent confusion. I'm not sure if the committee will state that English will be taught as the second language for teaching in schools or not, but I can say that it is considering the language teaching improvement scheme.

    "And, it will be able to give an answer on how it will move this project forward within the next one or two months," he said.

    Meanwhile, former Deputy Education Minister Varakorn Samkoses said he agreed with the idea of declaring English the second language in schools, as Thailand will be part of the Asean community in 2015.

    However, he said, most Thai people were not ready for communication in English despite the coming Asean community. So other sectors of society should prepare for the change as well, by seeking strategies to help improve their personnel, especially the government and private sectors.

    "To move the education sector [forward], we should start with training our Thai teachers along with importing foreign teachers," Varakorn said.

    "The Basic Education Commission's English Resource and Instruction Center should be the main agency responsible for the scheme. It should collaborate with universities to share their knowledge and train and certify teachers in each region.

    "Schools should create an English learning environment by using sign boards in English around their premises; having students perform English-language stage dramas; teaching math and science in English; and having foreigners [coming in to] meet and talk to students," Varakorn said.

    English is used as an official language in the Philippines, Hong Kong and Singapore, but used as a second language only in Malaysia, according to Wikipedia.

    phuketgazette.net

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    It does not help that many farang TEFL teachers not interested in real teaching. Even if you are a TEFL teacher yourself you have to agree with this statement. Many Thai teachers work very hard on a small salary (6000+ baht) but have large classes and few resources at their disposal. At least with Thai teachers you get what you pay for.

  15. #15
    Mid
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    Plan to make English 2nd language vetoed
    20/10/2010

    The Education Ministry has scrapped a plan to make English the country's second language, saying it could lead to misunderstandings that Thailand had been colonised in the past.

    The ministry will make English the main foreign language instead of the second official language, Education Minister Chinnaworn Boonyakiat said yesterday.

    A subcommittee on education standards development under the committee on education reform proposed in July that English be made the country's second official language. The panel hoped this would spur students to achieve proficiency in English and help place the nation on the road map to the Asean Community in 2015.

    Mr Chinnaworn said the ministry had carefully considered the proposal and found it might lead to misunderstandings among people and agencies responsible for implementing the policy. Other countries that have declared English a second official language were normally viewed as former colonies, he said. Thai is the only official language of Thailand.

    The minister maintained that the ministry would make a serious effort to improve English teaching and learning in schools even though the second language proposal had been scrapped.

    The ministry would outline its key policies for education improvement on Friday, with the attempt to make English the main foreign language on the agenda.

    The plan calls for the development of English teaching and learning at popular public and private schools to be on a par with international standards. After completing their education at those schools, students would be able to communicate fluently in English, he said.

    Native speakers would be recruited to teach English to senior secondary school students, and the ministry would seek the cooperation of the Foreign Affairs Ministry to contact foreign teachers to teach the students.

    The ministry would also announce its policy on revamping the school curriculum on Friday.

    bangkokpost.com

  16. #16
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    Talking All change?

    They have done a complete U-turn over three weeks. It was a done deal, and now a volte-face.

    English as the 2nd language would be a big step to getting these people 'educated'. Most internet stuff is in English. Most top text books are in English. International science, business, whatever, is conducted in English.
    If a Thai meets an Italian, they will attempt to communicate in English.

    However, the problem is much deeper, and will not be solved by nominating a 2nd language. The problems are inherent in Thai society, which is divisive and dog-eat-dog. Most educated (huh)people only aspire to a new LV handbag, and couldn't care about education as fundamental to social and human progress, happiness, health and welfare. The poor are kept in their place, and exploited until they die young on building sites or in rice fields. It all sucks to high, high heaven. Education is not about knowledge, life improvement or social progress--it's a plaque on the wall which shows that you are hi-so and cheated your way through Mahidol or Chula for four years, wasting your time while teachers acted the clown and wasted their own time.

    There is no hunger for knowledge. Nobody reads...only comic books.

    It is so backward, it's incredible. But, we are part of perpetuating the BS.

    Social change will not come with a few tweaks. How often do we hear that the gvment has a 'new idea' to improve education? Every 4-5 weeks, I reckon, but nothing happens.

    Of course, some of it is tied up with tea-money and worse. I know of one department at a very famous uni which spent 15 million baht on ICT equipment, laptops and stuff. Problem was that the stuff only cost 12 million. Somebody creamed 3m.

    The problems lie much deeper than adopting another language. It would have been far better if they had been invaded (rather than shit themselves and allow the Japs in, in 1941). If you have invasion (like 1066), or immigration (like Einstein coming), then you win hands down.

    Eddy

  17. #17
    Member EssEffBee's Avatar
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    Mr Chinaworn said in order to successfully carry out the plan it is necessary to have foreign teachers from countries using English as the mother language for all schools for Mathayom 4-6 level (Grades 10-12).
    The word 'Grades' doesn't mean anything. The word 'Years' does mean something...therefore, I will translate that 'grades 10 to 12' equals the phrase, 'Years 10 to 12', since the Thai secondary education system has a total of 12 years.

    Nonetheless, this English learning is far too late. If Thailand takes teaching English seriously, it will not wait until students are in their teens to teach such a subject (the worst possible time to teach anybody anything.)

    "We have eyed American teachers who are retired under an early retirement programme," he said.
    I sincerely hope that this statement is not serious. I would not wish the dreadful American accent upon my 2nd worst enemy. Also, the language called 'American', only vaguely resembles English.

    This country is going downhill if it insists upon following American language.

    Goddam! Y'all will be talkin like...dude, what's up? Of course, the answer to 'What's up' is this...'I'm ok. Why do you ask?'
    As for 'dude', this word needs to be evaluated by ALL Americans.

    And if anybody asks, I detest the American 'short cuts' & the incorrect useage of certain words.

    Miriam Webster's dictionary needs to be greatly edited, back to 'normal' English.
    Idiots! I'm surrounded by idiots!

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by EssEffBee
    I sincerely hope that this statement is not serious. I would not wish the dreadful American accent upon my 2nd worst enemy. Also, the language called 'American', only vaguely resembles English.
    I almost resent that remark but don't as I just disagree. I've found that the "Queen's" language is extremely difficult if not impossible to understand, especially from less educated types.

    It's funny though, most Thai natives find my American English quite understandable, though I do come from the Mid-West where accents aren't really part of our spoken word.

  19. #19
    Member EssEffBee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Lee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by EssEffBee
    I sincerely hope that this statement is not serious. I would not wish the dreadful American accent upon my 2nd worst enemy. Also, the language called 'American', only vaguely resembles English.
    I almost resent that remark but don't as I just disagree. I've found that the "Queen's" language is extremely difficult if not impossible to understand, especially from less educated types.

    It's funny though, most Thai natives find my American English quite understandable, though I do come from the Mid-West where accents aren't really part of our spoken word.
    At least you've got a good sense of humour .

  20. #20
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    The plan calls for the development of English teaching and learning at popular public and private schools to be on a par with international standards. After completing their education at those schools, students would be able to communicate fluently in English, he said.

  21. #21
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    I agree that to improve the teaching of English in the Thailand schools they must start at first grade or the first year in school. A five year old, in one year, can learn through games and songs, what it takes a young adult takes to learn in about 2 years.
    The debate between which version of English should be taught rages on in the forum. I ask only the following questions:
    Vocabulary
    1. What is a flyover?
    2. What is a pitch?
    3. What is a bonnet?
    Technology:
    1.Who invented the personal computer on which you so forcefully put your opinions?
    2.Who invented or refined the operating system for your computer?
    OK now you can slam me as you seem to do on a regular basis?
    Cherrio, I must go now.
    Last edited by mtone9317; 31-10-2010 at 11:17 AM. Reason: syntax

  22. #22
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    It depends on which dictionary you use, where you originate from or what internet search engine you use. Here are some examples

    A Flyover -
    1. A road which crosses another road at a higher elevation
    2. The passage of an aeroplane, or possibly many, over a location

    A Pitch -

    1. The area between the wickets, upon which cricket is played
    2. The regular spacing of holes along an object
    3. The transverse angle of an aeroplane

    A Bonnet -

    1. A type of hat or headgear
    2. The shaped covering of an automobile engine
    3. A type of flower

    Who Invented the first pc

    1. Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) - Altair 8800

    Who invented the computer operating system

    1. Lyons built and operated the world's first business computer which they called LEO (Lyons Electronic Office

  23. #23
    Thailand Expat jandajoy's Avatar
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    I do hope that none of the above are responsible for any type of language teaching.

    If they are they need to be sacked immediately.

    Appalling representation.


    You should be ashamed.

  24. #24
    Mid
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    Popularity of English classes raise fears
    CHULARAT SAENGPASSA
    November 1, 2010

    State schools worry lack of native speakers may reduce quality of courses if many more institutions are allowed to run such classes

    The number of Thai-English schools in the country has risen to 331 in response to growing demand. And 60 more schools are seeking approval for plans to run an English programme or mini-English programme.

    While students of current bilingual programmes have demonstrated satisfactory qualities including fine academic performances and self-confidence, the rising popularity of bilingual schools has raised concerns as to whether the quality will drop.

    A key concern is that the pool of qualified native English speakers in Thailand is very limited. This is partly because remuneration packages for teaching foreigners are much higher in Taiwan, South Korea, and Japan.

    Foreigners who agree to accept a lower wage for teaching jobs are often underqualified.

    "We have found that hundreds of native speakers have used fake certificates in applying for teaching jobs," St Stephen's International School director Wannasarn Worakij disclosed.

    He expressed concerns at the quality of foreign teachers at a recent seminar.

    Schools conducting English programmes (EP) use English as the language of instruction at least 15 hours a week. Those with a mini English programme (MEP), meanwhile, conduct classes in English for between eight and 14 hours a week.

    The Education Ministry has required that only native speakers with good academic credentials be recruited for schools with the EP/MEP.

    Relevant schools have followed the rule strictly but that does not mean all English-speaking teachers really have appropriate qualifications.

    According to a study by the Office of Basic Education Commission (Obec), it is difficult for each school to check the credentials of foreign applicants by themselves. The researcher recommended that a key agency under the Education Ministry help with this issue.

    The survey also said the shortage of quality foreign teachers at state bilingual schools was caused by the ceiling on foreign teachers' salaries. The government requires that schools pay no more than Bt35,000 a month to each foreign teacher.

    "Great teachers deserve to get high pay," the survey said.

    Bilingual schools already struggle to find qualified foreign candidates. So if the number of schools with English or mini-English programmes rises further, it will be even more difficult to get qualified native speakers.

    Dr Wattanaporn Ra-ngubtookm who heads Obec English Language Institute, said when the demand for foreign teaching staff grows, the issue of quality will arise.

    "Schools will not have much choice because the pool of native speakers is limited," she pointed out.

    Wattanaporn is familiar with the matter because her institute has the job of checking the readiness of schools that want to launch English programmes.

    "Many schools don't get the green light because they are unable to meet prescribed criteria, in particular about the teachers' qualifications," she revealed.

    The Education Ministry has now allowed qualified schools to open EP/MEP at both primary- and secondary-education levels.

    The MEP tuition fee is just Bt17,500 per semester, a rate much cheaper than the fee collected by schools with the English programme (EP) and international schools.

    The EP tuition fee costs up to Bt35,000 a semester.

    Wattanaporn said these rates were very cheap when compared with the fee charged by international schools.

    "EP/MEP is an interesting alternative for parents who want their children to use English fluently but cannot afford to send their children to international schools," she said.

    And schools with EP/MEP still provides a Thai-style environment, so students do not adopt "Western values".

    These factors have made schools with EP/MEP increasing popular.
    The trend, however, has raised concerns among relevant authorities that they must do something now to ensure the quality of |these English programmes doesn't drop.

    An executive at a famous Bangkok-based school, which also offers EP, believed the Education Ministry should raise the ceiling on the salary that foreign teachers can be paid to make it easier for schools to attract good teachers.

    "We also want to attract more capable native speakers," she said, on condition that her name was not disclosed.

    She said her school's EP programme was profitable and could, in fact, offer higher pay to native speakers. However, due to state regulations, the financial profit had to be submitted to the Education Ministry.

    "Now, we have to keep our EP quality by relying on money from the parents' association."

    She revealed that her school had offered "fringe benefits" of at least Bt55,000 a month to top-class English teachers. This explained why its EP standard was high.

    No of schools with English programme (EP)

    Supervising agencies Level Total

    Primary / Secondary / General / Vocational

    OBEC 61 / 116 / - / - 177

    OPEC - / - / 148 / 6 154

    Schools seeking approval to start EP and mini-English programmes (MEP)

    Level EP MEP Total

    Secondary 2 33 35

    Primary 6 19 25

    Total 8 52 60

    SOURCE: OFFICE OF BASIC EDUCATION COMMISSION

    nationmultimedia.com

  25. #25
    Thailand Expat
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    Quote Originally Posted by St Stephen's International School director Wannasarn
    "We have found that hundreds of native speakers have used fake certificates in applying for teaching jobs,"
    And this is worse than a Thai 'teacher' with a Thai 'degree' in what way?

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