World Bank report on Thai education reveals unflattering results

Around 60 per cent of Thai students failed to meet the minimum proficiency level in reading, according to the latest PISA evaluation.

A new report by the World Bank on the education system in Thailand exposes the flaws in the system and the inefficiency of the sector in terms of grooming a skilled workforce, placing Thai students at the backbenches of international rankings.

School closures due to the Covid-19 pandemic have accelerated the trend, warns the report released on December 9. It also comes amid a Thai student rebellion demanding urgent education reform, including to scrap the outdated obligation to wear schools uniforms and the archaic rote-learning system.

The report looked at the results of the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), which evaluates skills and knowledge of 15-year-olds in reading, maths and science and collects information on students’ attitudes, home background, learning experience and school contexts. 

Of the 79 participating countries in the latest PISA evaluation, Thailand ranked 68th in reading, 59th in mathematics and 55th in science, ahead of only Indonesia and the Philippines in the East Asia and Pacific region. 

Around 60 per cent of Thai students failed to meet the minimum proficiency level in reading, while 53 per cent were below minimum proficiency in mathematics, and 44 per cent in science.

High level of school absenteeism

The World Bank report, entitled “Creating inclusive learning environments in schools to help improve Thailand’s education performance,” further found that students in Thailand also reported higher levels of school absenteeism and a weaker sense of belonging at school compared to regional averages.

It also noted that investments in key financial human and digital learning resources were especially low in rural and disadvantaged schools. As a comparison, total spending per student in Thailand from grades one to nine is $27,271, less than one-third of average spending per student across OECD countries.

Further, disparities between schools with higher and lower socioeconomic status students in Thailand are more pronounced than in other countries in the region. 

“The Covid-19 crisis has exposed inequities in education systems across the world including Thailand,” said Birgit Hansl, World Bank country manager for Thailand. 

Inequality between students of different family backgrounds

While close to 90 per cent of relatively wealthy students in Thailand have a home computer, and nearly all have Internet access, only 20 per cent of students with low socio-economic status reported having computers for schoolwork and just 61 per cent reported having Internet at home.

The World Bank suggests that the Thai government addresses the issue by ensuring that all classrooms are adequately staffed with qualified and well-trained teachers and material resources to improve learning outcomes of students, especially those in high-need schools.

It also recommends to enhance teaching methods and classroom management to make effective use of learning time, as well as to provide a safe and welcoming learning environment to keep students in schools.



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Around 60 per cent of Thai students failed to meet the minimum proficiency level in reading, according to the latest PISA evaluation. A new report by the World Bank on the education system in Thailand exposes the flaws in the system and the inefficiency of the sector in terms of grooming a skilled workforce, placing Thai students at the backbenches of international rankings. School closures due to the Covid-19 pandemic have accelerated the trend, warns the report released on December 9. It also comes amid a Thai student rebellion demanding urgent education reform, including to scrap the outdated obligation to...

Around 60 per cent of Thai students failed to meet the minimum proficiency level in reading, according to the latest PISA evaluation.

A new report by the World Bank on the education system in Thailand exposes the flaws in the system and the inefficiency of the sector in terms of grooming a skilled workforce, placing Thai students at the backbenches of international rankings.

School closures due to the Covid-19 pandemic have accelerated the trend, warns the report released on December 9. It also comes amid a Thai student rebellion demanding urgent education reform, including to scrap the outdated obligation to wear schools uniforms and the archaic rote-learning system.

The report looked at the results of the 2018 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), which evaluates skills and knowledge of 15-year-olds in reading, maths and science and collects information on students’ attitudes, home background, learning experience and school contexts. 

Of the 79 participating countries in the latest PISA evaluation, Thailand ranked 68th in reading, 59th in mathematics and 55th in science, ahead of only Indonesia and the Philippines in the East Asia and Pacific region. 

Around 60 per cent of Thai students failed to meet the minimum proficiency level in reading, while 53 per cent were below minimum proficiency in mathematics, and 44 per cent in science.

High level of school absenteeism

The World Bank report, entitled “Creating inclusive learning environments in schools to help improve Thailand’s education performance,” further found that students in Thailand also reported higher levels of school absenteeism and a weaker sense of belonging at school compared to regional averages.

It also noted that investments in key financial human and digital learning resources were especially low in rural and disadvantaged schools. As a comparison, total spending per student in Thailand from grades one to nine is $27,271, less than one-third of average spending per student across OECD countries.

Further, disparities between schools with higher and lower socioeconomic status students in Thailand are more pronounced than in other countries in the region. 

“The Covid-19 crisis has exposed inequities in education systems across the world including Thailand,” said Birgit Hansl, World Bank country manager for Thailand. 

Inequality between students of different family backgrounds

While close to 90 per cent of relatively wealthy students in Thailand have a home computer, and nearly all have Internet access, only 20 per cent of students with low socio-economic status reported having computers for schoolwork and just 61 per cent reported having Internet at home.

The World Bank suggests that the Thai government addresses the issue by ensuring that all classrooms are adequately staffed with qualified and well-trained teachers and material resources to improve learning outcomes of students, especially those in high-need schools.

It also recommends to enhance teaching methods and classroom management to make effective use of learning time, as well as to provide a safe and welcoming learning environment to keep students in schools.



Support ASEAN news

Investvine has been a consistent voice in ASEAN news for more than a decade. From breaking news to exclusive interviews with key ASEAN leaders, we have brought you factual and engaging reports – the stories that matter, free of charge.

Like many news organisations, we are striving to survive in an age of reduced advertising and biased journalism. Our mission is to rise above today’s challenges and chart tomorrow’s world with clear, dependable reporting.

Support us now with a donation of your choosing. Your contribution will help us shine a light on important ASEAN stories, reach more people and lift the manifold voices of this dynamic, influential region.

$
Personal Info

Donation Total: $10.00

 

 

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