Thanks for posting this mrwebb. When I spoke to my school about the changes, a few days after the announcement, my school told me there was a change of policy and the changes raised in the original announcement had been cancelled. I ought to have posted that here. Sorry.
I tried without success to find news of it on an official website or Thai news website, but couldn't. So I didn't post about it. I guess it's the Thai thing about losing face - no one in authority wants to own up to having made a mistake or jumped the gun on this.
My school told me that many many schools had objected to the change immediately after it was announced. My school said lots of schools had argued that the "logic" on which the decision was made is flawed. The "logic" assumes Thai MEP students do badly in their Thai science exams as a result of their focus on English. Thai schools have said it's nonsense to suggest that. Thai schools argue that their MEP students (who are said by their schools to be "special" or "gifted" after all) are perfectly able to understand science questions written in Thai, their native tongue, and the Ministry of Education backed down when faced with that. So poor science results must be blamed on something else, not their English programs. That's the story given to me.
I didn't know the bit about the delay in allocation of Government funds and the effect it's having on new contracts being given to foreigners. That might help explain a delay I'm experiencing with my new contract!