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Top Thai Education Officials visit Taiwan to Discuss Collaboration

Top Thai Education Officials visit Taiwan to Discuss Collaboration
Mr. Adinan Pakbara, Secretary-General of the Office of Private Education in Thailand visited Taiwan from May 23 to May 29, 2016 in response to an invitation from the Ministry of Education (MOE) in Taiwan. He was accompanied by five directors of Offices of Private Education in different provinces: Mr. Verapat Jangsiri, Director of Narathiwat Province Office, Mr. Songpol Kwanchuen, Director of Pattani Province Office; Mr. Dalun Nungarlee, Director of Satun Province Office; Mr. Somkid Joeichum, Director of Songkhla Province Office; and Mr. Pichet Joeitongsri, Director of Yala Province Office; and by Mrs. Sukanit Piyavittayanon, Director of the Special Policy School Office.

The group visited Taiwan to gain a better understanding of its private education system and of the teaching and learning of Mandarin in Taiwan, and to seek opportunities for collaboration with Taiwan. The MOE assisted them by arranging a visit to the Mandarin Training Center at National Taiwan Normal University, a hub for developing advanced pedagogics for teaching foreigners Mandarin as a second language.

They also visited Kang Chiao Bilingual School, I-shou International School, and Washington High School. These schools are part of the elite private education system, and they each combine a western curriculum and the local Taiwanese curriculum, and use both Mandarin and English for instruction. They place great importance in their curriculum design and delivery on the philosophy of learning by doing, on being creative, on team-work, and on providing activities for students to develop the core competencies to be successful in the future.

Food and hospitality are treasures that people in Taiwan and Thailand share. Thailand is known as a tourist paradise enjoying well-deserved fame for its tasty food and excellent service; and Taiwan’s reputation for greeting foreign visitors with great food and warmth is rapidly growing. Mr. Adinan and his colleagues enjoyed delicious Taiwanese food and a friendly reception during their study visit to Taiwan. Kai Ping Culinary School and National Kaohsiung University of Hospitality and Tourism, both of which train young Taiwanese to become highly skilled professionals in the culinary art and hospitality fields, certainly caught the attention of these Thai officials when they visited each of these campuses.

A one-week stay in Taiwan is simply not long enough to adequately explore just how Taiwan makes its education system one of the best worldwide. After observing some of the excellent features of the education offered by educational institutions at all levels in Taiwan the visiting officials expressed hopes for more educational collaboration between the two countries.

Education is a great asset of every country, and this visit represents a good beginning to developing such collaborations. We look forward to decision makers in each country’s respective Ministry of Education holding discussions and taking further steps to put in place opportunities for to learn from each other and work together in this vital area.