Trends in Primary and Lower Secondary Education in Thailand

Publication Abstract

Wongsith, Malinee, and John E. Knodel. "Trends in Primary and Lower Secondary Education in Thailand." PSC Research Report No. 89-157. 9 1989.

This study assesses recent trends in educational attainment at the primary and lower secondary levels in Thailand, with special attention given to the impact of recent restructuring of the educational system on these trends. The study is based on both enrollment statistics and data on educational attainment from the 1980 census and the 1987 Thailand Demographic and Health Survey (TDHS). The enrollment statistics permit calculation of annual continuation ratios while the census and THDS data permit calculation of the percentages completing or starting different grades or educational levels among successive cohorts of children. By combining the census and the TDHS results, educational attainment levels for an extended series of cohorts can be determined. This is of value because since 1963 the educational system has gradually been extending compulsory education from 4 to 7 years, with the timing of the change depending on the resources and readiness of the locality. Study results show little increase in the percentage completing grade 4 but a dramatic increase in the percentages completing grade 6 from 25 to 90 percent, undoubtedly reflecting in large part changes in the compulsory level. The percentage starting secondary school was not directly affected by the redefining of compulsory levels, but the results show a steady, if moderate increase from 20 to 42 percent.

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