Temple Schools

Coordinator: Lisa Nesser
Support staff/ volunteer: Fluctuates as volunteers are available.

To provide the most at-risk children in our community who have no ID status in Thailand, with a scholarship for basic education at a Temple School. This includes the costs for uniforms, lunch and other school fees. By enrolling in the Thai education system their chances of having long term access to education are greatly increased. School provides a safe daily environment—in contrast to spending 24 hours on a dangerous construction site. To ensure the children also have access to English education, our volunteers help teach English, creative thinking and art workshops as well as teacher training in the temple school educational system.

Target Group
Children in our community that have no documentation because they are refugees, and therefore have no access to education in the Thai public school system.

1 Scholarships
We match members of our international donor community with a child in need to give that child a scholarship for basic education. These schools are not the best but, for the children, they are better than receiving no education at all and left vulnerable to accidents, disease, abuse, sexual abuse and abduction in an unsafe construction site.

2 English teacher volunteers
We send volunteers to the Temple Schools when Thai Freedom House has an influx of foreign volunteers. We train the volunteers, give them access to teaching materials, and allow them to use the resource library at Thai Freedom House. The volunteers gain experience in community outreach, and in teaching English.

3 Teacher Training
We provide teacher training in Temple Schools, showing new teachers fresh ways of creating an enhanced learning environment. We teach them how to use activities such as pair and group work and interactive learning, focusing on problem solving and creative thinking. The teachers are usually just out of school themselves, and trained in teaching by rote learning, a technique which has proven to be detrimental to the development of children. By providing teacher training and encouraging the teachers to be creative, we can improve the education of a lot of the vulnerable children in Temple Schools who are usually undocumented and come from extreme poverty.

Ongoing/Current needs
Volunteers with teaching experience that are willing to go into an off-site environment to teach, conduct trainings and create materials for the Temple Schools. It is best if these volunteers speak some Thai to help them communicate with other teachers.

We do not currently have a budget for this project, we use the materials that we have at our on-site learning center to train and support the volunteers.

Future Projects/Aspirations
We aim to expand this program to provide regular, ongoing teacher training for the Temple Schools so that some of our own community members attend. This will ensure that they to get the most out of their education. In this way, we can access hundreds to thousands of children and raise the quality of education that they receive with a sort of ‘informal program’ within the mainstream education system.