A recent seminar in Bangkok reviewed the past decade of Thai policy for education management for stateless children, and the next steps toward education for all. Organized by World Education in coordination with the Migrant Working Group (MWG), Save the Children, World Vision, and the Thai Ministry of Education’s Office of Basic Education Commission (OBEC), the seminar highlighted the issues facing stateless children in Thailand, particularly those who are out-of-school.
In The Nation’s article on the seminar, World Education Country Director Patrick Kearns spoke about the situation for stateless children born to migrant workers from Myanmar. Kearns cited research conducted by World Education finding that there are around 400,000 migrant children aged five to 15 in Thailand, about 90 percent of whom were born to Myanmar parents in Thailand while others moved to Thailand with their parents from Myanmar.
Although a 2005 policy resolution allows stateless people to attend school, there are still concerns about access to school because many of these kids – especially those aged 11-14 – drop out to work and tend to their poor families. Rarely do those drop-outs return to school.
Kearns urged concerned parties to think of ways to keep such kids in the school until graduation, so they could use their certificates to get good jobs. “Our job is to figure out the way to keep them in school until they reach the appropriate age to work,” he said.
He noted that implementation of good education management for stateless children could allow them to be independent and less likely to fall victim to human traffickers or people wanting to use child labor.
Read more about the seminar in The Nation Multimedia article, Stateless children still missing school.