An investigation involving the Education Ministry has found some schools had doubled their requests for money from parents, despite being warned to put a halt to the practice. Among them is the highly regarded Triam Udom Suksa Nomklao School in Saphan Sung.
With help from the National Anti-Corruption Network, a civic group monitoring state corruption, the complaint was sent to Education Minister Chinnaworn Boonyakiat yesterday.
The network’s secretary, Mongkolkit Suksintharanon, said the parent of a Mathayom 3 student, whose name was withheld, in the Triam Udom Suksa Nomklao School filed a complaint to the network that their child was in the 12th substituted seat for continuing studies in the upper class of Mathayom 4.
The school refused him and instead accepted another student who was in the 22nd substituted seat.
After looking into the case, the network found the process of recruiting students in substituted seats was “unclear”. The network then found some parents had paid 30,000 baht to the school to secure a seat, Mr Mongkolkit said.
“The Education Ministry said it is closely monitoring 366 highly competitive schools and has placed requirements on schools to stop asking for tea money but only 40% followed this policy while the rest are apparently trying to double the tea money request,” he said.
He said the tea money was received in various ways, including payments via substituted seats, donations and religious activity financial support.
The network would also hand the case to the Office of the National Anti-Corruption Commission.
The Mathayom 3 student’s father said his son had no chance to continue studying in Mathayom4 level at this stage.
Sarayut Foosupniran, director of Triam Udom Suksa Nomklao School, insisted there was no bribery at the school and that it had already clarified the allegation with the Secondary Educational Service Area Office 2 and the student’s parent.
He said it was normal for the school to have a quota for prominent students who “enhanced the reputation of the school”. He said the 22nd substituted student could have been in that group.
He said Mathayom 4 class admissions were ascertained from examination results, an appraisal of those at Mathayom3 level who wanted to continue at the same school, and pupils who might enhance the reputation of the school.
“There has been no bribery in the school,” he said.
“Why would I risk being fired or investigated in exchange for a little amount of money?”
He said he planned to file a lawsuit against the accuser.
Report by : Bangkok Post