Thai education supervisors have extremely busy jobs, visiting schools to carry out training, mentoring teachers, carrying out monitoring and evaluation, assessing the quality of schools and teachers, and dealing with all the accompanying paperwork. However, one aspect of their jobs became a little easier thanks to training they recently attended to help them better understand the approaches and methodologies taught in the Regional English Training Centres (RETC), and to hone their teacher mentoring skills.
Since RETC began, supervisors have been noticing much higher levels of English usage and confidence from teachers in their schools. However, many of the supervisors are not fully aware of the approaches and methodologies used in RETC, so feel less confident in supporting the teachers in these areas. More widespread implementation of these new teaching approaches requires support from supervisors and understanding of the techniques used by the teachers.
The supervisors’ training, which included techniques for teacher observation, feedback, and mentoring, also helped them gain a deeper understanding of CLT. It is a key step in the process of getting buy-in and understanding from the supervisors.
“the Boot Camp (RETC) training was really useful for the steps in teaching, the training this week has been really useful in training us about the correct steps in observation.” Supervisor Ms Khanthanna Suttikorn (Boom)
Several RETC alumni attended the training and talked about how the RETC helped them become supervisors. Mr Angkhan Yulue (Inn) was formerly a Thai Master Trainer with RETC and while developing his training skills with RETC he decided he wanted to use what he had learnt to develop further. Inn is now a supervisor in northern Thailand, looking after 150 primary schools in the Chiang Rai area.
Boom, formerly a secondary school teacher, is now a supervisor for English teachers at 67 secondary schools. She was inspired to become a supervisor after attending one of the RETC courses as a teacher. She found the RETC training extremely useful and after the course cascaded her newfound knowledge to other English teachers at her school. However, Boom wanted to spread her knowledge and experience further and thought, “if I become a supervisor I will be able to cascade the knowledge I learned on Boot Camp not to one school but to all the schools and all the teachers I supervise.”
In order to keep supporting the supervisors, it is hoped that all 255 across the country will have the chance to attend this training in future. They will also be attending a week of RETC training, to gain first-hand experience of the skills their teachers are learning.