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jbowman1993

University Autonamy

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I have been reading articles about universities in Thailand seeking autonomy from the government buraucracy. They would still, however, recieve government funds. Students seem to oppose this idea because they claim it will increase tuitiion, without the guarantee of improvements in teaching. Proponents seem to think that faculty salaries will improve, and faculty will be held to a higher set of standards.

Since I teach at Mahidol U, i have a vested interest in this discussion, and I was wondering if any of you had any insights or opinions about the situation?

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There's been stories about it on Thai news. The unis want the ability to raise funds (charge students more) and the students, obviously, don't want this. this being Thailand if you take away the little control the government now has and allow Thai unis to use 'market forces' to survive, I'm sure the bullshit we all now experience will explode: lies, misrepresentation, no-fail etc.

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I guess Loaded and I are the only ones who keep up with current events, lol....

No you are not alone. Working in the CHE since several months, I can confirm they need more flexibility to increase their reactivity: procedures are quite heavy.

Edited by Asian Frog

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I supposed to go to work a Mahidol U but backed out at the last minute, could not bite the bullit on the salary cut. I know its well respected school. Wierd during the slary negotiations the nice Dr. acted like I was getting something special and he was making concessions and in the end I think all I was offerd was a standard package.

I was working at a private uni, decided to leave there too though, circumstances, forced me out (not work not visa). I found greener pastures though. I remain hopeful about returning someday. Eventually they will have to pay market price if they want to get anybody any good.

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I supposed to go to work a Mahidol U but backed out at the last minute, could not bite the bullit on the salary cut. I know its well respected school. Wierd during the slary negotiations the nice Dr. acted like I was getting something special and he was making concessions and in the end I think all I was offerd was a standard package.

I was working at a private uni, decided to leave there too though, circumstances, forced me out (not work not visa). I found greener pastures though. I remain hopeful about returning someday. Eventually they will have to pay market price if they want to get anybody any good.

Hopefully you were not going to teach english!

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Just an update about this. While the university autonomy issue at many schools stalled out, the NLA did pass the Mahidol University autonomy bill. Our university is beginning a 6 month transition period, where it will be removing itself from the MoE government system.

Not sure if this is good or bad, but I'll hope for the best.

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In The Nation today............

School-Based Management to give school officials a free hand in policies Published on November 19, 2007

The Education Minis-try is hoping to introduce a new management model to three of the country's best schools next year.

The schools are Suan Kularb Wittayalai, Triam Udom Suksa and Samsen Wittayalai.

"We have invited the executives of these schools for a discussion," Dr Somkiat Chobphol, the deputy secretary general of the Office of Basic Education Commission (Obec), said.

Education Minister Wijit Srisa-arn said the new model, "School-Based Management", would give these executives a freer hand in running their schools.

"They can issue their own policies," he said.

Deputy Education Minister Varakorn Samkoses explained the schools would become like public organisations with the right to set their own guidelines about how to recruit their teaching staff and their students.

"They will be able to give higher pay to their teachers and they can set tuition rates by themselves," Varakorn said.

The Education Ministry's move is bolstered by the success of the Mahidol Wittayanusorn School. Established as a public organisation in 2000, the school is the country's first specialised science school. One of its main objectives is to fully develop the potential of exceptionally gifted and talented students.

According to Somkiat, this school receives a budget of Bt100 million a year. Its management is independent of the Education Ministry's policies. The school can hire teachers and students based on its own guidelines, which focuses on the excellence of scientific knowledge.

Currently, the number of students in each class of the Mahidol Wittayanusorn School is 24 as compared to around 50 at other secondary schools. Varakorn said the students at the Mahidol Wittayanusorn School were of a high quality and they would likely outperform students at the prestigious Triam Udom Suksa School in the near future.

Despite their reputation, prestigious state schools have a limited budget. For example, Suan Kularb Wittayalai School is given only Bt9 million a year yet shoulders expenses of Bt30 million.

Top education officials now believe the school-based management model should be the right solution to fully develop efficient schools - which will in turn benefit their students.

While Suan Kularb Wittayalai, Triam Udom Suksa and Samsen Wittayalai are being encouraged to trial the school-based model, Wijit believed more than 300 schools across the country could be ready for the concept as well.

Chularat Saengpassa

The Nation

Edited by Manchester

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