Education reform project aligns with Thailand 4.0

Education reform project aligns with Thailand 4.0

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (File photo: Chanat Katanyu)
Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha (File photo: Chanat Katanyu)

The cabinet has approved an education reform project aimed mainly at equipping graduates with knowledge and work skills enabling them to serve the country’s changing labour market, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha said on Thursday.

The project is part of the preparations for the government's “peopleware” campaign that aims to ensure the country has sufficient software, hardware and human resources to make the jump to "Thailand 4.0" — the next stage of development based on enhanced technology and innovation — a success, the premier wrote in a Facebook post.

Demand for skilled workers in the government's flagship Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) scheme and other emerging businesses is a key factor driving the reform project, which is dubbed the “Higher Education Sandbox”, Gen Prayut wrote.

More importantly, it is in line with the country’s long-term national development strategies, he noted.

The Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation will lead the development of new study programmes — focused mainly on efficient and effective learning —  as a pilot scheme, he added.

They will eschew old rules, encourage "outside the box" thinking and hire qualified university lecturers, Gen Prayut wrote.

People who work for public or private organisations with sufficient knowledge and skills to transfer to students will also be considered for teaching roles as part of the programme.

Moreover, compulsory subjects will be taught in classrooms but also in other environments such as workplaces giving students hands-on experience, Gen Prayut confirmed.

Other key parties contributing to the development of this reform project include the Council of University Presidents of Thailand, universities, the industrial sector, and Thailand's Board of Investment, he wrote in the online post.

“This will be an important step in educational reform at the higher education level designed to produce new graduates who will be a driving force in the country’s development,” he wrote.

As for the reform of primary education, the government has already pushed to pass the 2019 act on education innovation that aims to decentralise power and give more freedom to education institutions, local administrative organisations and communities to better serve learners’ needs, he noted.

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