Bridge to a Brighter Tomorrow

SDG 10 : Reduced inequalities
Reduce inequality within and among countries

Mahidol University was funded by UNICEF to conduct the Patani Malay-Thai Multilingual Education Program (PMT-MLE) which is an action research initiative that begun in 2007, demonstrating the effectiveness of multilingual education on learning outcomes for children. Pilot schools were paired with comparison schools. The pilot schools followed an adapted curriculum which uses Patani Malay as the main language of instruction in the early years plus a specially developed “Thai for Ethnic Children” course. The amount of Thai language used in the classroom increased each year. The comparison schools followed the normal “Thai language only” curriculum. Annual evaluations tracked student performance and community attitudes. Based on learning assessments and evaluations conducted by Thai researchers over the course of 8 years, the 4 wins for children associated with the program are better Thai faster, improved learning of other subjects, improved national-wide examination and strong community support. The output provided modern pedagogical “best practices” and evaluated by Thai and international scholars.