CHIANGRAI – In a recent interview Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vanchai Sirichana of Mae Fah Luang University said Students from other Asian countries are better than their Thai counterparts in English-language proficiency.
Mr Wanchai said a great number of foreign students studying at the university in Chiang Rai province were more attentive in class than their Thai colleagues.
The English language skills of the foreign students especially those from Myanmar, Vietnam and Bhutan were also better than the Thais, he added.
Mr Wanchai called for an overhaul of the English teaching and learning system in academic institutions, especially in the elementary and secondary levels.
The issue has been raised and widely discussed in the public, but the Education Ministry never takes action.
Those working as school executives in provinces must be well qualified and should dedicate themselves to developing their school to improve the performance of the pupils, he said.
The national educational reform in 1999 only focused on a structural change which gave more administrative powers to the so-called educational service area offices in provinces. However, those who were in charge of the offices did not have the skills required for the work and this had caused damage to the country’s educational system, the rector added.
Mea Fah Luang University is by far the only public university in Thailand with English as its primary medium of instruction. It is located in Chiang Rai province in northern Thailand.
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