Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Random checks planned on school admission applications

Apr 04. 2018
File photo: Viroj Samruan
File photo: Viroj Samruan
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By The Nation

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Students applying for admission to schools nationwide, especially those considered more prestigious, will be scrutinised at random in a bid to curtail the common practice of parents bribing their children’s way into a preferred school.

National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) secretary Worawit Sukboon said on Wednesday his agency, the Education Ministry’s Office of Basic Education Commission and the Interior Ministry would conduct random checks.

He made the comment while reporting on the progress of an NACC probe into alleged bribery involving Viroj Samruan, former director of Bangkok’s Samsen Wittayalai School.

Worawit said commissioner Wittaya Arkhompitak would head a sub-committee investigating Viroj and four other people accused of demanding and receiving Bt400,000 in “tea money” from the parent of a Mathayom 1 pupil seeking admission.

The probe had uncovered evidence of wrongdoing, Worawit said.

The alleged bribery – believed to be one of several cases of parents “making donations” to school officials, for which no receipts were issued – was caught on video and posted online by a school alumnus and parent.

The clip drew widespread criticism for the practice.

It was reported that, when news of the case leaked, receipts were issued retroactively in an attempt to cover up the scandal.

An Education Ministry disciplinary probe has already deemed Viroj guilty. He will be dismissed from the civil service, possibly without a pension or other benefits.

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