Most of the schools in Thailand are operated by the government, private and local administrative council, and a portion of them are operated by the private and local administrative council. The current education system of Thailand is based on the 6:3:3 model, comprising 6 years of compulsory education, 3 years of lower secondary education and 3 years of upper secondary education. Based on the 1999 Education Act, by 2004 the compulsory education will be extended to 9 years. Preprimary education, organized for children aged 35 years old, ranges from one to three years. Currently, preprimary education is available in most villages.
The 6year compulsory primary education can be provided in all primary schools. Some primary schools, however, provide up to lower secondary education. Lower secondary and upper secondary education last 3 years each. There are two main channels of education at upper secondary level: the academic stream which prepares students for universities, and the vocational stream which prepares students for the skilled labour market. According to the 1999 Education Act, the State will have to provide free education up to grade 12 for all Thai citizens.
Tertiary education at the baccalaureate level normally requires four years of study. Some programmes, however, require five years of study. A master's programme normally requires two years of study beyond a bachelor degree, whereas a doctoral study requires approximately three to four years of study and research after the master's degree program. Some universities, both public and private, also offer international programmes conducted in English at both undergraduate and graduate levels. There are also two public open universities accommodating more than half a million students.
Access to Education and Enrollment
Because of the massive expansion of schools in 1960s and 1970s, the education system in Thailand has been able to accommodate most schoolage children....
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