Govt sets targets to transform learning

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Education Minister Nataphol Teepsuwan speaks at the Powering Digital Thailand 2021: Huawei Cloud & Connect event co-hosted by the Bangkok Post and Huawei Technologies Thailand on Wednesday. (Photo by Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)

The Education Ministry says it aims to transform Thai education through the use of technology to ensure human capital is well-prepared for the 21st century.

Education Minister Nataphol Teepsuwan said his ministry now plans to improve the standard of education by developing a digital platform called “Thailand Education Eco-System” to give a boost to human capital.

He was speaking at the Powering Digital Thailand 2021: Huawei Cloud & Connect event co-hosted by the Bangkok Post and Huawei Technologies Thailand. The event is being held until Saturday at Convention B2, 22nd Floor, Centara Grand at CentralWorld. There, Huawei is presenting the latest Cloud, AI and 5G technologies all in one place. These technologies increase the value of various industries and stimulate Thailand’s economy.

Mr Nataphol said he had visited various schools and institutions across the country to receive feedback about issues concerning the education system. Through this approach, a plan has been hatched to unlock education to ensure human capital is strengthened for Thailand’s future.

“The 21st century has presented itself as an era where growth in knowledge is rapidly changing at an exponential rate. Consequently, the global supply of skilled labour has become more competitive to meet new expectations. Hence, the need for individuals to become adaptive in a fast-paced environment has become critical. The problem is straightforward, Thai education has yet to move [forward] much at all,” he said.

Mr Nataphol said the ministry will become the enabler by building an education system that answers the demands of a competitive labour force. “Thai education must shift in a way where students depart from their ‘fixed mindset’ of the past and begin to incorporate a ‘growth mindset’ in their daily lives. This is what the Education Eco-System strives to achieve,” he said.

He said the Thailand Education Eco-System will use supply and demand mechanisms and provide a platform that provides real-time information on the skills which companies are seeking. This platform will unlock the potential of the education system by bridging the gap between state agencies involved and private employers. According to him, the change will focus on a new evaluation process for teachers and students. Students will rely less on tests, while teachers will depend more on self-growth for higher positions in teaching. A new curriculum and guidelines will produce quality teachers.

“The ministry has recently developed three apparatus — the Human Capital Excellence Center (HCEC), the Digital Education Excellence Platform (DEEP) and the Excellence Individual Development Plan (EIDP) to improve the education system. All of them use digital technologies such as Cloud and AI,” he said.

HCEC will improve the quality of teaching careers for both secondary/primary education and vocational schools across the country. It is integrated into schools to enhance methods of teaching and boost the capacity of teachers to deal with new standards. DEEP is an online platform for managing Thailand’s education beyond school walls, granting access to anyone with an internet connection. The IEDP programme, meanwhile, promotes excellence for students and teachers through transforming the process of evaluating KPIs.