Thailand’s constitution guarantees the right for children to receive a minimum of 12 years of free, quality education. Yet, nearly one million Thai children, particularly those from the marginalized sectors, do not attend school.
While education is supposed to be free, parents still have to pay for uniforms, materials and other education-related expenses. These additional expenses for just one child can add up to more than what a poor family earns in an entire month.
Lack of birth registration or citizenship, discrimination by teachers and peers, as well as the lack of an education curriculum that is appropriate for the local context or ways of life are some of the factors limiting access to education for disadvantaged children, including those from ethnic minority groups.
Quality of education is also of major concern. For example, many schools in poor and remote areas do not have a sufficient number of qualified teachers for all classes.
ActionAid Thailand (AAT) works towards enabling all children in Thailand to have access to free, quality education for all students, regardless of their social or ethnic backgrounds. AAT’s approach is working with partners, alliances, activists, policy experts to advocate locally and nationally for education reform and improvement.
AAT does not focus only on children’s education but also on adult education - especially women’s education through skills improvement and vocational training.