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Thai students rank below average in global education survey

PHOTO: The Borgen Project

The reputation of the Thai education system is taking a hammering lately, with the latest findings showing 15 year old Thai students rank below average compared to their peers in other countries.

This comes on the back of a recent study of English proficiency in the ASEAN region, which found that Thailand was bottom of the pile.

The 2022 Programme for International Student Assessment, conducted by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, found that Thai students rank below average in science and maths – and much lower in reading.

The PISA assessment is conducted annually and evaluates global education systems by measuring the performance of 15-year-old school students in mathematics, science, and reading. Thailand did not do well.

According to a Nation Thailand report, the kingdom has shown a downward trend in all 3 areas in the last 10 years. Thailand’s current average score is lower than that of Singapore, Vietnam, Brunei and Malaysia.

The experts say the results of the assessment show a distinct correlation between investment in education and average performance.

“Countries like South Korea and Singapore have demonstrated that it is possible to establish a top-tier education system even when starting from a relatively low-income level, by prioritising the quality of teaching over the size of classes and funding mechanisms that align resources with needs.”

The PISA assessment evaluated nearly 700,000 school students from 81 countries, making the 2022 study the first large-scale analysis to look at student performance before and after the disruption caused by the pandemic. The OECD says the result was an “unprecedented drop” in overall performance.

“Compared to 2018, mean performance fell by 10 score points in reading and by almost 15 score points in mathematics, which is equivalent to three-quarters of a year’s worth of learning.”

Thailand is also one of 7 countries were reading performance was seen to be deteriorating prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. The other countries are Costa Rica, Finland, Iceland, the Netherlands, the Slovak Republic and Sweden.

SOURCE: Nation Thailand

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