Foreign teachers in Thailand hope for stability amid education overhaul

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buksida
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Foreign teachers in Thailand hope for stability amid education overhaul

Post by buksida » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:51 am

On April 17, a number of senior civil servants at the Teachers’ Council of Thailand (TCT) were removed in a dramatic move by Thailand’s Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha to kick start the nation’s desperately needed education reforms. The TCT had been responsible for professional development, academic standards and the issuing of teaching licenses. With Thailand’s education system showing few signs of improvement over the past decade, the reaction to this bold move was largely positive.

And it wasn’t just parents that accepted this news with little objection, many foreign teachers were relieved to hear that the current leadership of the TCT had been shown the door. For many the TCT has been a thorn in the side with their ever-changing policies which had teachers jumping through hoops on a regular basis.

Ensuring the quality and appropriateness of individuals who are entrusted with educating Thailand’s youth is clearly an essential task that cannot be neglected. Most people would agree that background checks and monitoring individuals who work in schools is essential – teachers and language instructors need the appropriate knowledge, skills and temperament to work in schools. But what had frustrated and often infuriated foreign teachers was the inconsistent and rapidly changing manner in which these measures had been introduced and enforced.

Over the years, the policies from the TCT have complicated the hiring of foreign language instructors. This has been at odds with the Ministry of Education’s policy of encouraging schools to employ native English speaking teachers to support a communicative approach to foreign language learning. It sometimes appeared that the education departments were working against each another with one department encouraging foreign teachers while the other department was restricting their ability to work legally.

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Re: Foreign teachers in Thailand hope for stability amid education overhaul

Post by GLCQuantum » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:45 pm

Fortunately, I don't teach here anymore but I can completely understand the frustration for western teachers. The silly little courses and seminars that foreigners needed to attend to stay legal was just ridiculous. I particularly liked the 'Thai Culture Course'.

"Can you say 'Sawasdee Khrap'? Yes... that's it. Very good"

I've never in my life had to deal with such a stupid set of people making such a stupid set of rules. The only good, well-run schools here are the ones where the school director has had the common sense to put the foreign teachers in charge. Still have to jump through all the hoops but at least the school itself is an enjoyable place to work.

Unfortunately, it's the children who suffer because of the people in power's crazy, thoughtless choices.

Edit: Just to add, in my last year of teaching (did it for ten years) I was having to spend more time writing documents to please the MOE than preparing for the childrens lessons. That doesn't make any sense. Loved the job - hated the system.
Last edited by GLCQuantum on Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Foreign teachers in Thailand hope for stability amid education overhaul

Post by Name Taken » Thu Apr 30, 2015 12:57 pm

GLCQuantum wrote:Fortunately, I don't teach here anymore but I can completely understand the frustration for western teachers. The silly little courses and seminars that foreigners needed to attend to stay legal was just ridiculous. I particularly liked the 'Thai Culture Course'.

"Can you say 'Sawasdee Khrap'? Yes... that's it. Very good"

I've never in my life had to deal with such a stupid set of people making such a stupid set of rules. The only good, well-run schools here are the ones where the school director has had the common sense to put the foreign teachers in charge. Still have to jump through all the hoops but at least the school itself is an enjoyable place to work.

Unfortunately, it's the children who suffer because of the people in power's crazy, thoughtless choices.
:lach:
Thailand, what a joke this country is sometimes. It's hilarious and sad all at the same time.

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Re: Foreign teachers in Thailand hope for stability amid education overhaul

Post by dundrillin » Sat May 02, 2015 12:48 am

We are forced to go on pointless courses in the UK as well. To continue to be a trainer for graduate dentists we had to spend on full morning on an equal opportunities course. However I did learn that it was permissible for a Chinese Restaurant to advertise for a Chinese waitress but illegal to advertise for a Chinese chef. A morning well spent.

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