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Montessori Thailand to host congress, says country leads Asean in education model

Nov 24. 2017
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By The Nation

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Thailand is viewed as the centre of Montessori education among Asean nations, said Megan Tyne, project manager of the International Montessori Congress 2021 and of the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) in a press release on Friday.

The Montessori Association of Thailand (MAT) has been selected to host the International Montessori Congress 2021, becoming the first country in Southeast Asia to head the event.

The Montessori model of education has been in place in Thailand for 12 years, witnessing rapid growth “in both quality and quantity”, Tyne said. A key to the organisation’s growth was the support it received from the Thai government, she added.

“There are more than 600 teachers in more than 500 public schools in Thailand who have passed training requirements and are qualified Montessori teachers, as well as an additional 100 teachers in private schools,” she said.

Thailand will be the first country in Southeast Asia to host the international congress. The first event was held in 1999 and has been held in Asia only once — in Japan.

The AMI selected Thailand based on the strength and growth of the country’s current program, according to the release. The 2021 congress will highlight Thailand’s role as the hub of knowledge-sharing in Montessori education in Southeast Asia as well as the Asia-Pacific region, including China.

The Montessori method of education provides a child-centred approach based on what the organisation calls “scientific observations of children”. Developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, it has been in use for more than 110 years in countries across the world.

“The Montessori method is based on understanding how the child develops at each stage and provides the best possible environment to support that development,” Tyne said.

Tyne said the AMI has high expectations for Thailand’s role in supporting the continued growth of the Montessori method throughout Asia, which is why the country was chosen to host the International Montessori Congress 2021.

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