Official in one Phuket district plans to step up English teaching

Kathu official looks to improve school's English teaching, photo by PR Phuket.

Even though Thailand’s English language proficiency ranked 100 out of 112 countries last year, an official in one Phuket district isn’t giving up on teaching the language. The chief of Phuket’s Kathu district, Siwat Wangkun, says he has looked beyond the walls of the district’s schools for teaching English, since some school staff lack proficient English teaching skills.

The groups Siwat has turned to for help include local government agencies, foundations, associations, and entrepreneurs who are qualified and proficient in English, and can help schools. Siwat said that the mayor of Patong Municipality, and the president of Kamala Sub-district Administrative Organisation, are supporting him.

Now, a meeting for all partners supporting the project is scheduled for June 2 at Ban Mai Reap School in Kathu. Siwat said that media, and all groups interested in the project to improve English instruction, are welcome to attend.

Siwat’s initiative comes in the wake of a recent announcement by Phuket Governor Narong. Narong said that it’s important for children to better understand English so they can have more job opportunities in the future, particularly in tourism.

Thailand’s poor ranking in English language has been discussed for many years. Critics of Thailand’s education system say it is outdated as it focuses on rote learning methods, which essentially means memorising facts and figures, rather than applying them.

Focusing on language accuracy over the sheer act of trying to converse in English, has been cited as another hurdle in the country’s population advancing its English skills. Critics of the education system say these 2 factors are the most important in preventing the average adult from being able to converse effectively in English.

SOURCE: The Phuket News

EducationPhuket News

Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.

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