|The EFA 2000 Assessment: Country Reports|
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4.2.3 Development of the Students Ethics and Morality
Besides promoting and developing learning ability and knowledge, Thailand has recognized the importance of strengthening its development effort in the area of ethics and morality among youth and the public in order to instill values vital to the development of the quality of life. Goals have been set in Article 8 of the Master Plan of Action on Education For All.
1) Curriculum on Ethics and Morality The Ministry of Education has specified the inclusion of the development of ethics and morality in the curriculum of both primary and secondary education In the primary education curriculum, the content is included in the character development experience group which aims at building up the learners development of values, ideas, behaviors and personality through relevant activities, namely, ethical education, arts, physical education, boy and girl scouts, etc. The contents in the lower and higher secondary education level are included in the social sciences, work and occupation group subjects. The curriculum aims to create awareness of the students values of ethics and morality so that they will possess desirable character: discipline, sportsmanship, love of work, morality at work. Supplementary activities are also provided too, such as such as boy and girl scouts, etc. The non-formal education curriculum of all levels have also integrated ethics and morality in social study and Thai language. Activities on the improvement of quality of life are also included to provide opportunities for non-formal education students to attend religious days functions, public service activities, and local culture and art functions.
The Department of Curriculum and Instruction Development conducted the evaluation on the characteristics of morality and values of the students, namely, sense of sacrifice, determination for development, and public spirit (sense of responsibility, discipline and unity) every other year. Objective tests are used as tools. Students may choose to provide answers according to their perceptions. There were 4 rating scales; level 1- acknowledging, level 2- willing to comply/practice, level 3 - realizing the value and benefit, and level 4 - faith. The outcome is shown in the following :
Table showing percentage of primary students classified by level of sense of sacrifice and determination of development.
|No. of students in sample groups||Level of sense of sacrifice
The outcome of the primary students characteristics in 1992,1994, and 996 showed that these characteristics were rated in order of priority as follows; realizing the value and benefit of sense of sacrifice and determination to develop, faith and then practice, awareness or acknowledging. The percentage of students who favoured the realization of the value and benefit increased every year, from 33.11% in 1992 to 80.66% in 1996.
Table showing percentage of students in lower secondary classes, by the criteria of the evaluation of characteristics of ethics and values (at the national level):
|No. of students in sample groups||
Level of characteristics on sense of sacrifice and determination
The evaluation of the characteristics of students at lower secondary level at the beginning of 1993 and 1995 identified that these characteristics were ranked as follows; realization of morality and values, faith, and compliance and acknowledge, respectively. The characteristics of realization increased from 48.55% in 1993 to 70.74% in 1995.
The above chart implies that students in primary and lower secondary levels tend to develop to be good citizens.
Despite a satisfactory outcome of the assessment, teaching-learning process on ethic and morality development was not limited. The majority of the teachers use conventional and inattractive method. The assessment and measurement wer ignored. Little attention was given to the ethical development of those at the executive level. The Ministry of Education has taken up action to remedy the situation including the production of curriculum handbooks, promotion of the use of technology, promotion of personnel development.
2) Promotion, support and dissemination of ethics and morality
Related government agencies are the Department of Religious Affairs, The Office for Ethics Development and the Department of Physical Education.Department of Religious Affairs conducts various activities to promote ethics and moralities among target groups in a multi-disciplinary approach. In addition to the provision of education to disadvantaged children at the Buddhist Dharma-Pali School, there are other activities. In pre-school centres, monasteries and masjids arrange classes for pre-school children, providing them with lessons and training concerning ethics and morality and prepare them physically, mentally and intellectually for actual education. The Sunday Centre for Buddhism Studies arrange courses on Buddhism for students and general public, inviting youth to participate in religious functions and devoted to the society. The Centre for Islamic Studies and Islamic Ethics at masjids (called Tadika / Fastudin Schools) provides courses on Islamism to Mulim students. In 1999, there are altogether 3,480 government-subsidized pre-school centres run by monasteries and masjids (with 225,580 children under their care). In addition, there are 1,168 Sunday Buddhist centres and 189 Islamic centres. More and more people are sending their children to study and participate in functions at these centres.
Besides religious centres, other types of cooperation exist among monasteries and schools to enable school age youth to have faith in the religion. Many schools invite monks to teach ethics and/or conduct preaching on religious days, or sometimes the students are invited to the monastery to perform religious functions.
Another form of providing support to ethics and morality is financial assistance provided to the provincial authority to organize courses on ethics to the students. In 1993, a number of 1,054 schools were subsidized and 930 teachers and personnel responsible for ethics were trained.
In 1996, the support was increased to 2,250 schools and 1,250 teachers and personnel. Support has also been given to the units in charge of training at sub-district. Financial support in 1992, 1994 and 1997 were provided to 4,507; 4,732; and 5,087 units respectively. Knowledge on ethics and morality is also disseminated through the media such as, radio, television programmed and printed materials in order to gain a wider access to the public.
4.2.4 Training in Essential Skills
As already mentioned in the previous chapter, the 1978 Primary and Secondary Education Curriculum (revised in 1990) aims at preparing students for livelihood, capable of undertaking profession or work consistent with their ability. The aims of each level of education are as follows;
1) Primary education level Subjects in the group of work and occupation aim at work-oriented. Skills in work process are provided to enable the students to learn how to work in team. Students will learn how to develop their work and the process of work. Contents are divided into housework and agricultural work such as food and nutrition, fishery, etc.
2) Lower secondary education level Subjects are classified as the group of work and vocation at the lower secondary level. At upper secondary level, basic knowledge on vocations and professions is taught, aiming at enabling students to analyze, plan, and develop the quality of their work as well as their work attitude and cooperation with others. Focus is on the skills particularly in occupation, positive ideas on occupation, ability in management, cooperation in running enterprises or businesses and have good ethics in such undertaking.
3) Vocational education level Students are additionally taught subjects on strategies of running a successful business. Local successful businessmen are invited to give advice and techniques in their particular areas of specialization such as personnel management, marketing, request for capital assistance from funding sources, etc. Teachers will provide close supervision and guidance and counselling. Partial funding may be arranged, to be returned at later dates, to provide t students with a chance to start their business.
4) Non-formal education For those not in the formal education system, the public and private sectors always organize training courses for general public on various occupations. Activities are provided for particular requirements of various target groups. Of the training courses provided, those organized by the Department of Non-Formal Education are:
Skills Development and Employment :
Thailand has designated vocational training and development as strategies in national development to be included in the National Economic and Social Development Plan. The focus is placed on decentralization with a will for development in intellectual and skills of Thai people. The activities are systematically designed in compliance with the age.
Occupational training is provided both in formal and non-formal education. Several agencies are involved, such as the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Interior and Bangkok Metropolitan Administration. Major objectives are: to create and develop skills, to enable people to earn more income, to prevent migration into town, to create new occupations to replace the old ones in some area, for instance, training hill-tribes to cultivate other crops to replace opium and other plants of addiction on highlands. In addition, the training also aims at maintaining the villagers in the border areas and assisting people affected from the fights at the borders.
The main target groups are the economically-disadvantaged, housewives and those engaged in agricultural labour, impoverished labour living in big cities, workers lacking opportunities to continue their studies, and those labour needing skills improvement. The Department of Skills Development is the main agency to be responsible for organizing training courses for new entrants. The following is a project of government agencies on vocational training and skills development:
Youth Development in Promotion of Technicians. This project was undertaken by the Office of Accelerated Rural Development (ARD), Ministry of Interior. The project began in 1989 and has led to work generating in the rural areas. Youth aged 15-25 received training in the areas of ARD. Courses offered are: mechanics, welders, electricians, pick-up truck maintenance men, and constuctors. The duration of the courses were 120 days, 15-16 batch per year with about 16-30 trainees each. About 450 persons a year received this service. The trainees who finish the course will be awarded with certificates from the Skills Development Institute.
Types of Vocational Training and Skills Development:
Training courses are organized according to the target groups and readiness of relevant agencies. Training is given in class and field sites, as well as mobile. The duration of training ranges from 15 hours to 1 years, The management varies. A government agency may organize a training or allocates the budget to the community to undertake a training course and mobilize local resources to assist. The government may assist in marketing by finding outlets for their products. Such community or locality may carry out the production for their own consumption or for sale. Production may be made by individuals, households or groups such as groups of houswives and farmers, etc.
According to the survey by the National Statistical Office in 1994, 1996,1997 and 1998, the percentage of 55.9 of graduates from various institutions in 1994 were employed. The percentage has been on the decline since then. In 1994, only 55.9% of the graduates were employed and 55.5% and 51.2% in 1996 and 1997 respectively. The drop was very steep in 1998 when only 46.6%were able to be employed. More female are employed than male.
There are two types of unemployed people: those who keep looking out for jobs and those who never do so. The latter category consists mainly of those who continue to study ( accounting for more than 90% of jobless graduates). Therefore, the real percentage of graduates with unemployed, in 1994, 1996 and 1997, was only about 12.0, 11.5 and 11.9 percent respectively with a sharp increase to 20.0 per cent in 1998. This was because, since 1997, Thailand has been under an economic crisis, causing more people to become unemployed in 1998.
Table showing percentage of graduates at all levels of education, according to the employment status, 1994,1996,1997 and 1998:
-still looking for jobs
-not looking for jobs
Source: National Statistical Office. Office of the Prime Minister
Improvement of Health and Quality of Life:
The overview of the improvement of health and quality of life of Thai children indicated that during 1990 to 1998 a slight improvement on many aspects ranging from the following: weight of newborn babies exceeding 3,000 grams; proper nutrition for 8-15 year-old children; pre-natal care for pregnant mothers, proper child delivery and post-natal care; immunization for children aged under 1 year old and primary school pupils. All of these reflect that Thailand has paid more attention to the improvement of health and quality of life of the children. The survey of the quality of life conducted by the Department of Community Development showed some interesting figures:
4.2.5 Education for Better Living :
Distance education media and printed materials in support of service for education have long been introduced to Thailand, particularly radio, which was first called "Witthayu Suksa (Education Radio)", produced by the Ministry of Education and the Public Relations Department. Expansion has been made of other types of learning network with best access to rural areas and the community, such as the establishment of village reading centres, public libraries, museums, mobile libraries, publications, groups of local intellectuals, television and education by satellite. Such networks are run by both public and private sectors to support and provide education and knowledge to improve a quality of life of the people. This is to be discussed as follows:
The Use of Distance Education Media and Information
The application of distance education media and information dissemination through radio, television, postal service, publication and satellite has long been undertaken by the public and private sectors and played an important role in delivering information and data to remote areas inaccessible to government services. Distance education is crucial in promoting education to people living in areas inaccesible to education in the past decade.
1) Radio, television and postal service The government, through the Ministry of Education, has made use of radio programmes for education to a limited extent for more than 20 years. At first, air time for educational programmes at radio stations could not obtained a wider coverage. The content of the programme broadcast at that time was mainly produced similarly to that of formal education. During 1978-1984, Thailand began to establish Radio Thailand for Education. With the support from the World Bank, it was launched in 1985. The station was established with the aim to provide both formal and non-formal education. Programmes are organized in the way that they can be used as educational tools in consistency with the curriculum. The service serves straight into schoolrooms, to teachers and students. Programmes organized are made to provide education to people in the non-formal education system for the improvement of their knowledge and ability which will be useful to their life-long education. In addition, there are knowledge-oriented programmes providing advice and stimulating innovative ideas on various issues, such as agriculture, health, income generation, law, administration, good citizenship, population studies, family planning, etc.
Programmes broadcast include school radio programmes, non-formal education by radio and postal service, agricultural extension through media, health and news dissemination, etc.
The Government also has the policy to let all radio and television stations broadcast programmes to supplement useful knowledge to young people and general public, especially those educationally- disadvantaged and living in remote areas. Regulations for broadcasting were as follows;
Radio. Not less than 25% of the total on air time for daily programmes shall be provided to news and education, with at least 15-minute religious (dharma) programme weekly.
Television. News and knowledge programmes must be on air not less than 15 percent of the air time for daily programmes. At least 30 minutes a day must be given to programmes for children.
The total number of radio stations both in AM and FM frequency is 525. Of these, 78 stations are in Bangkok, 448 stations are in the rural areas. (Source: Radio Inspection Unit, Public Relations Department). Of the television stations, both under the government operation and those leased to private sector, 9 stations are in Bangkok. There are 31 sub-stations upcountry, belonging to Radio and Television Thailand. The reports on the quality of life of Thai people in 1994,1996 and 1998 showed that the percentage of households receiving information through radio and television were 92.2, 95.9 and 98.5 percent respectively, which constitutes to the achievement of the target. (The targets for 1994 and 1996 were 85 per cent while that of 2001 is 95). It is assumed that distance media is able to assist people from all parts of the country to receive more useful news on a gradual and increasing basis.
The survey on radio programmes for education on Radio Thailand in 1996, conducted in 6 provinces: Lampang, Mae Hong Son, Surat Thani, Ranong, Ubon Ratcha Thani and Khon Kaen, it indicated that the listeners rated the following programmes as "good": non-formal education, open universitys programme and radio programmes for school, agriculture, health, knowledge for life. A percentage of 45.7 of the listeners apply the knowledge to daily life. 12.8 percent identified that they had never used the knowledge gained at all. The number of the respondents keeps on increasing. Therefore it is assumed that programmes, such as knowledge about politics, administration, democracy development, career guidance, religion, ethics, spiritual development, environment conservation and health promotion are beneficial to the listeners.
2) Printed media Printed media produced by public and private sectors include information/technical materials, daily/weekly newspapers, features, Thai/foreign languages weekly/monthly magazines. It is found from the survey that materials published by private sector from the centres were over 180 titles and 165 titles from provinces (mostly in the form of local newspapers) Such materials offer knowledge- disseminating columns for the benefit of the readers, Subjects range from family, health, science, technology, etc. Some are specialized printed materials such as health magazine, mother and child magazine, folk technology magazines, etc.
3) Satellite The expansion of education opportunity of the government has brought to the establishment of the Centre for Distance Education by Satellite in 1994. Target groups would have more choices of their won to receive education with similar quality and standard. Distance education of the country is then arranged in 3 categories;
a) distance education by satellite for non-formal education in accordance with the curriculum of the non-formal education at primary to upper secondary levels. The service focuses on youth and people missing an educational opportunity, especially those in remote areas, labourers with little education, throughout the country.
b) distance education by satellite for formal primary to upper secondary education. An emphasis is put on quality and standard of instruction in subjects where teachers and specialists are scored, especially in educational institutions in remote areas.
c) informal distance education by satellite to suit the students interest. This aims at providing knowledge and skill beneficial for daily life of the people.
The distance education by satellite focuses on fully-integrated of multimedia. There are many restraints concerning this, for instance, many schools and educational institutions cannot rearrange their time-table to be consistent with the time when the programme is on air. Not enough television sets are available for the purpose and no publication to supplement the instruction. In 1997, educational institutions and agencies participating in the programmes were allowed to use television programmes as they see fit, mostly in the form of supplementary aid to education. No particular specification has been set on the free-to-choose study type. The satellites also apply to long-distance meetings, training, seminars for specific groups such as: training teachers in English at primary level, training teachers of the disabled, and training for teachers in computer science.
Free elective subjects offered are : foreign languages, hotel management, mechanics, well-being, home economics, etc.
In addition to the setting up of the Thaicom Distance Learning Centre, in 1996, a television station was set up in the compound of the school at Klaikangwon Royal Villa, Hua Hin, to televise programmes to networking schools nationwide. At present, 1,504 schools have joined in the project, to be classified by agency as follows:
Table showing number of schools participating in Thaicom Distance Learning Project, in 1996, classified by agency:
|Agency||Number of schools|
Learning Network :
The development of learning networks was included in the 7th National Education Development Plan (1993-1996). The policy on this issue aimed to establish learning networks to enable people to increase their knowledge and ability by the community and society. Mobilization of cooperation among public and private sectors and local wisdom must be encouraged to play an important role in the management of sub-district and non-formal education that meets the requirement of the community. There was an evidence indicated that in 1990, 125 centres were established and in 1996 the centres were expanded to 789 centres covering all district. The centres aim at providing non-formal education in various forms as well as information dissemination services. The centres are mostly located monasteries, masjids or public-donated lands. At present, these centres play an important role in the management of community learning centres and support them to become focal points of learning networks in the community.
These are established to allow more involvement in the provision of education from the community. The centres also provide lifelong education to public and students in the community. These centres may be called by different names and located in different places such as:
These centres are responsible for organizing activities in non-formal and informal education in various forms as required by a specific individual or groups.Education management with community participation has been continuously developed with an increasingly wider coverage. The implementation in the fiscal year 1998 could be summed up as follows: the establishment of 5,055 community learning centres (in 5,256 districts) with 4,942 teachers and 328,346 students. Besides community learning centres, which were developed from village reading centres, there are other types of other network to support community learning. These networks are public libraries, science centres, etc.
Moreover, several agencies are trying to integrate local wisdom with new technology, such as the registration of local components in traditional medicine by the Ministry of Public Health for quality control. More than 3,000 kinds of traditional medicine have been registered with the Ministry. The development of traditional medicine has also been made such as wax glazing traditional medicine pills or tablets, or the extract of essence to be used in modern medicine.
In conclusion, public and private sectors have been jointly developing learning networking. This cooperation aims to encourage the community to self-dependent by applying various sources of knowledge to improve a better quality of life of the people in the community.
Chapter 5 Summary of the Result of the Assessment:
Weaknesses and Strengths
5.1 The Result of the Implementation
As a result of the implementation according to the guidelines for the provision of education for all committed by the Thai Government together with other 155 Member States, the Thai Government has incorporated EFA policy in the 1992 National Education Plan with the following:
The implementation according to the programmes may be summed up as follows:
Provision of education on family and child care:
The provision of education on family and child care has met with a certain level of success. This was due to join efforts among relevant agencies, both at the primary and secondary education levels. Integration of the content relating to family and child care and other related subjects have been made . At the upper secondary level, the knowledge on family life was emphasized. On health matters, the outcome of the implementation on mother-and-child health and school hygiene showed that the standard of growth of children aged 0-5 is 46.1 percent higher than the target (target was 80%); children less than 1 year old were given complete course of immunization (tuberculosis, diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, measles, polio, German measles, mumps, hepatitis-B). It indicated that 4.3 percent higher than the target. Regarding the early childhood are and development, it is found that 78.6% or the majority are directly taken care of by their own parents. This is vital to the growth of the child during that age.
Pre-primary education :
During 1990-1998 the expansion of pre-primary education was able to cover 2.3 million children aged 3-5, both in the form of schooling and childhood development . Although the outcome of the implementation has not yet met the target of the Plan which indicated that all children at this age group should receive at least one year of preparation before entering school, the service must be fully given to the remaining number of 0.8 million children in the next 3 years. Such endeavour may be possible, though it may take a year longer to accomplish. The Cabinet has already approved to the Policy and Plan of 12-year basic education proposed by the Ministry of Education. According to the plan, the expansion annually covered 0.2 million of children By 2003, every 3-5 year of age child, which is about 3.1 million will receive pre-primary education..
This level of education is compulsory. Since 1990, the coverage of primary education has extensively been high . The gross enrollment rate of children aged 6-11 is about 90%. The disparity of gender 0.96 to 0.99 percent with slightly boys than girls. Nevertheless, about 9-10% or 600,000 children in school-age are not receiving education. These children belong to the disadvantaged group inaccessible to education opportunity. Efficiency of the management is still low due to the rate of repetition as well as of the drop-outs, causing education waste and opportunity waste..
Lower secondary education:
In 1990, at the beginning of EFA implementation, it was found that the percentage of coverage of lower secondary education was only 39.6 In 1999, after nearly a decade of implementation, the percentage of coverage for children aged 12-14 in lower secondary level has remarkably increased to 72.6. The provision of lower secondary education will be rapidly expanded and achieve the goal in 2002 since Thailand has already proclaimed the National Education Act 1999 extending the compulsory education from 6 to 9 years.
Education for the disadvantaged :
During 1990 t0 1996, Thailand was able to extend basic education provision to cover the disadvantaged which include the handicapped, the poor, slum dwellers and residents in construction sites, the culturally disadvantaged and those without nationality. The coverage, especially at the lower secondary level, was 3.9 times higher than what previously existed. This is even higher than the target of the plan. The endeavours continued in various forms to meet specific requirements of different individuals. In 1999, the Ministry of Education, the core ministry in the provision of this level of education, has declared the year as: "The Year of Education for the Disabled". Any disabled or handicapped person wishing to study will be enroll in any educational institutions.
The provision of education in support of literacy :
The result of various literacy campaigns reduced illiteracy rate. In 1998, 97.7% of the 14-50 year-old age group could read and write in Thai with a slightly higher percentage among males than females. The achievement was however lower than the target expected by the year 2001. The 1999 National Education Act has stipulated that all technological media, namely radio or television, operating in the country must include programmes for education at an appropriate proportion. This regulation is instrumental to the strengthening of the promotion of learning among people.
Learning Network :
The creation of the learning network aimed at providing people with lifelong continuing education. It comes in diverse forms with various agencies responsible for the implementation. The most widely extensive forms of learning network in the community are: village reading centres; provincial/district libraries; monasteries as dissemination centres of news, information, data in the village; public announcement tower in the village; mobile libraries, museums or even sports training ground of the village. The current reform is attempting to promote the community participation in education provision and management and encourage the community to develop their plan on education.
Development of the Students Health :
In order to improve the students health, Thailand has implemented many projects such as the School Lunch Programme to promote students health development. The Fund for School Lunch of Primary School Students Act was proclaimed in 1992 to provide lunch to all students. Milk is also provided as supplementary food. Health check-up in schools and health insurance are created. Physical exercises for health in educational institutions are encouraged. Measures incorporated in several projects have brought about success at a certain level. Successful projects are the campaign for drugs prevention in schools under the White Schools Project, and the encouragement of community participation in the improvement of health, environment and sanitation in school.
Development of learning ability :
Since 1990, Thailand has always placed an emphasis on the improvement of the teaching and learning process. Basic education curriculum has undergone a great deal of development to make it consistent with the requirements of the society and changing situations The achievement of students in some subjects relating to thinking and problem solving are relatively low. Examples of this can be seen in the study of science and mathematics. The learning process is based on teachers as a centre and emphasizes on memorization than on the students own ability to think, analyze, and learn from experience and practice. Nevertheless, Thailand is trying to solve such problems, giving priority to the process of learning which focuses on the learner, enabling the learner to acquire knowledge on their own. Promotion of teaching-learning on mathematics, science, Thai and foreign languages is strengthened and has always been prioritized. Participation in contests such as the International Olympic Mathematics and Science Competition and locally-organized contest is also encouraged.
Development of ethics and morality :
Education in Thailand emphasizes not only physical and intellectual development but also mental development, particularly in ethics and morality. Other activities are arranged to promote ethics at the basic education level, such as in the course teaching Dharma-Pali and general subjects together to enable the newly-ordained monks and novices to be educated and developed in ethics and morality simultaneously. Other activities are: Sunday Buddhist schools for students and nursery schools and pre-school centres in monasteries and masjids. Religious activities in support of the course are also organized. The evaluation on studentsethics and morality showed that the students realized the importance of sacrifice and development-oriented. It is assumed that students will develop to be good citizens.
5.2 Strengths and Weaknesses
The results of the implementation of education for all during 1990-1998 apparently indicated the achievement of upgrading basic education. However, the assessment showed that there were both strengths and weaknesses in carrying our the national education for all activities.
5.2.1 The policy on the expansion of educational opportunity created the development of education in quantitative aspect among public schools while private sectors reduced their participation in education provision. In school year 1990, the private sector obtained the proportion of the provision of pre-primary education 25% of the total enrollment and 11% of the total enrollment in secondary education. The proportion of participation from the private sector decreased over the years. In the school year 1998, the private sector showed the proportion for the provision of pre-primary education only 20% and 6% for the provision of lower secondary education.
5.2.2 There are several government agencies active in the provision of basic education for all. This provides the strength in extending a wider coverage to the target groups. However, the efficiency of the delivery and quality of education reveals some weaknesses due to lack of coordination among these agencies. It created a duplication of service and target groups. The area to be covered is too widespread, scattering over a too vast expanse of land with limitation of resources and readiness of agencies, resulting in a great disparity in the quality of the provision of education. (Summary: The State of Thai Education 1997, The Office of National Education Commission, P. 39)
5.2.3 Education in Thailand is mostly formal and age-specific, presenting a particular weakness resulting in diminishing opportunity for those who want to further their studies at later dates. The summary of education statistics 1997, published by the Policy and Planning Office on Education, Religion and Culture, Office of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, 85% of children aged 6-11 received primary education. The number of children maintaining in a higher level reduced. Only 66 percent of 12-14 year-old group can continue their study in lower secondary level, while only 44% of the 18-17 age group can pursue their study in upper education level and only 30% of the 18-21 year-old group maintains in a higher level. Such restraints in formal schooling system have made several agencies concerned with the provision of education turn their attention to non-formal education which helps in supplementing lower secondary education.
5.2.4 Weaknesses still exist in providing full coverage of education to the disadvantaged due to lack of relevant data on number of population of such group, cooperation with NGOs, participation from family and community . This is something that needs urgent solutions.
5.2.5 Another weakness was insufficient of publics participation. A survey showed that only 40% of the total number of educational institutions allowed the parents and the community members to participate in developing curriculum and arranging educational activities. (Summary: The State of Thai Education 1997. The Office of National Education Commission, P. 39). The insufficiency of public participation affected a wider coverage of education provision to the target groups. At the same time, education provision will not be able to meet the demands of specific communities and obstruct the achievement of quality assurance.
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