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  • Students' Situation under the Military Dictatorship
  • The haphazard education system of SPDC
  • Diploma Courses
  • Certificate Training Programs
  • Enrollment for higher education
  • Schools directly controlled by the military regime
  • Bibliography and Contact

  • Students' Situation under the Military Dictatorship back to top

    In the hand of the current junta, the situation of the students and schools are becoming worse. We, the Foreign Affairs' Committee (Bakatha) would like to express the current situation of the Basic Education High School (BEHS) No.1, Mingalartaungnyunt township, Rangoon as an example.

    School Attendance

    The classrooms of BEHS No .1, Mingalertaugnyunt Township, Rangoon are being prepared, because Lt. Gen. Khin Nyunt will arrive at the school and open the multimedia classroom. For that reason, the students are attending only one day a week. Most of the students are not caring to learn in the classroom and are relying on tuition. Moreover, they are relying on answering " the spot question " during examinations. One student has to spend at least 3000 kyat a month for tuition. School Situation During recent school terms, the former head master of the school, U Tun Kyi abused the school funds. As a result, he was dismissed form his post and some teachers were transferred. A car repair workshop has been allowed to open for the school fund in the grounds of the school and the noise of the workshop makes the students annoyed when they attend the school. Although the teachers established some canteens for the students' welfare, the prices at the canteen are higher than other restaurants selling outside of the school. Each student has to donate at least 3000 Kyat in order to establish a multimedia classroom in the school. Character of the Students A student attending the sixth standard in this school was dismissed because of selling ganja and a student attending the eighth standard in the same school, was also dismissed for holding a knife. After his dismissal, the eighth standard student threatened other students with the knife and robbed them of their money. Therefore, the head master of the school and some students arrested and sent him to a police station. According to a group of (Basic Education Student Union) BESU based inside Burma, the students are going to be examined for the first test and the students and their parents are very worried about the education system.

    The haphazard education system of SPDC back to top

    The Pa-an college located in Pa-an, Karen state , is under control of Mawlamyine university. The students from seven townships in Karen State have to learn higher education in the Pa-an college till third year course and then have to join with Mawlamyine university for more education. On 24 July 2000 , the Pa-an college was reopened. Nevertheless, the students who come from Thandaung, Hlingbwe, Myawaddy and Kyarinnseikgyi township faced barriers, because the college could not provide the hostels. for them. Although, the students tried to rent rooms outside of the campus ,the landlords asked very high rent for a room .As a result ,some students had resigned from their learning. A history student learning in third year, at pa-an colleges, said that they attended the class 3days a weak and a student girl who come from Kyarinnseikgyi township to the college said that she had to pay 25000 kyats per month for the cost of learning. At the present, the third year students in Pa-an college have been preparing for their final exam three months after the school reopened . Now, the fourth years students are going to prepare for their final exam in this coming November. The third year students are upset because of the two months system learning and some parents criticized the SPDC military government, because of the cost of learning, five thousand for just two months per year.

    Diploma Courses back to top

    In 1999, the authorities opened Evening Diploma Courses in every institute and university. At this time, evening courses for engineering subjects at AGTI Schools were also opened. The cost for the evening program in the Rangoon AGTI schools is 3,000 kyats per month (however, government civil servants pay only 2,500 Kyats per month). In other cities, the cost is 2,500 Kyats per month. The course term for the Evening Diploma course is 2 year. The certificate of this course is lower than the level of certificate for the evening diploma course at the Technical Colleges, which cost 4000 Kyats per month. The subjects students can study at the GTI evening course are as follows:

    1. Mechanical Power 2. Machining Tool 3. Electrical Power 4. Electronic and Communication 5. Civil

    Certificate Training Programs back to top

    In 1998, the regime instituted the Certificate Training programs, then claimed that the students were now able to attend classes. High School standard graduates waiting for University entrance can join these training courses at different schools across Burma. These courses are not diploma training courses, colleges, institutes or universities, as the students merely receive a certificate.

    The total costs of the certificate training programs are as follows: Subject Term Total Cost English Language training 2 years 13000 Kyats Basic Computer training 6 months 8000 Kyats Accounting training 1 year 100,000 Kyats Training in Marine Science 1 year 150,000 Kyats Training for Domestic Science 6 months 3000 Kyats Training for painting 6 months 5000 Kyats Training for typing 6 months 4000 Kyats

    The Education Report part 1 is end and part 2 will resume in the beginning of September. The part II was highlight the military education in Burma and consisted 6 chapters. After the part I and II, the conclusion have to follow the whole report of the All Burma Federation of Student Unions - Foreign Affairs' Committee as final part.

    Enrollment for higher education back to top

    The evaluation departments for 10 grade examination (upper Burma) located in Mandalay and the evaluation for 10 grade examination (lower Burma) located on Thahtone street in Rangoon, are offering application forms to students who passed the last university entrance exams, from the last week of Feb 2001 to 21 March 2001. The students can submit their application, after getting the recommendation from township peace and development council, police station and hospital. When they are getting the recommendation, they have to pay between 50 and 200 kyat (Kyat is Burmese currency unit). Most students are applying for a subject they can learn by the distance education system. According to a student boy, the students don't rely on the current education system. The students are allowed to enroll for some subjects such as medical university, institute of technology, computer science with very high marks, but they can join Military medical university, Military Engineer University and Military nursing university with low high marks. The marks for popular subjects are as follows

    marks for Male marks for Female Medical university 402 and above 415 and above Institute of Technology 390 and above 400 and above Computer science 380 and above 380 and above Economy 345 and above 370 and above Yae Sin university 330 and above 330 and above Forestry 330 and above 330 and above

    The students also have to sign the paper in which (6) facts are described and they are; (1) All of above facts correct. (2) Application is agreed with parents (or) guardian. (3) Parents (or) guardian had agreed to pay school fee regularly. (4) will obey and apply the disciplines defined by university/college as good student girl/boy. (5) I am not a member of any political party. (6) Put up the resignation document from party.(for party member only)

    Therefore, when the students are applying their subjects and before attending the university/college, they are prohibited to be involved with politics. We can see on this fact that the students have no right to express themselves.

    A partial report on the current 10 grade exam.

    Tenth-grade exam for 2000-2001 academic year begins on 13 March 2001. 632,846 students are sitting the exam and this number is more 200,000 than last year. Because, State Peace and Development Council SPDC will change the tenth grade exam system in the coming year. The timetable of the exam is as following; 13-3-2001 Burmese 14-3-2001 English 15-3-2001 Mathematics 17-3-2001 Science 19-3-2001 Social science

    On 13 March 2001, the students can answer Burmese easily, because it is native language for them. But on 14 March 2001, most students could not answer English. Although, the English question is not too difficult, they could not write the essay and letter writing. There is a lack of school time and teachers in the school and the students could not learn the subject well. In addition, they have to learn some essays and letters by heart. In the modern world, English is the global language but most Burmese have poor English because of the education system of SPDC.

    Some government officers such as MIS, township reporters, immigration officers,have access to computer and photo copying machines. By using ordinary people's name. They create small papers to carry in the exam rooms secretly in return for some money. "The ruling military government is trying students to give a bad character to the students sitting exam and also bring down the education system." said a schoolgirl.

    Foreign Affairs' Committee All Burma Federation of Student Unions

    P.O.Box ( 122 ) Mae Sot Tak , 63110 Thailand.

    Tel : 66 55 542 724/ 66 55 533 752 Fax : 66 55 542 724 Email : bakatha@cscoms.com / bakatha@loxinfo.co.th

    " Safeguard for students' right. " " Fight for academic freedom . "

    Schools directly controlled by the military regime back to top

    " Uplift of health, fitness and education standards of the entire nation" (One of the four social objectives of the SPDC)

    It can be acknowledged that all schools in Burma are ultimately controlled by the military regime. In Part One of this education report, the ABFSU researched and proved this to be true. However, this chapter will focus on 4 institutions that have been specifically designed by the military to train military students, and that are officially termed as "military" schools. These schools are:

    (1). Defence Services Institute of Medicine (2). Defence Services Institute of Technological (3). Defence Services Academy (4). Defence Services Institute of Nursing

    (1). Defence Services Institute of Medicine

    The Defence Services Institute of Medicine was founded on November 19, 1992. Prior to the opening of this institute, the military had trained their military students in medicine at civilian institutes, the most prominent being the Institute of Medicine No#2 at Migalardone. After the founding of the Defence Services Institute of Medicine, the regime changed the Institute of Medicine No#2 to the Military Medicine Institute. The Defence Services Institute of Medicine awarded its first Bachelor degrees in the 1999 academic year. Application to the institute is open to civilian students who have passed the high school matriculation exam, and who are willing to join the military, yet students who are related to the military elite are favoured above the civilian applicants. The military regime provides the education at the institute free of charge to military students who are accepted. Civilian doctors, on the other hand, must come up with their own money to participate in the program. Students who graduate from the Defence Services Institute of Medicine become military service personnel and earn salary and rank. As doctors, they are able to serve in the military department as Captains or Majors. Attendance figures are not clear, as the military regime has yet to publicise information concerning the number of students who have attended the institute, or who are currently enrolled. The Defence Services Institute of Medicine is amply supplied with lab materials and modern textbooks, in stark contrast to civilian schools. As intern surgeons, the military students are required to take a field practical at Military Hospitals, where they are occasionally able to learn from professional surgeons from abroad for short-term training. In Addition, military students at the institute are eligible for various state scholarship programs. Remarkably, during the numerous times that civilian schools of higher learning have been closed by the regime, including civilian medicine institutes, this Military Medicine Institute has been consistently open for class. Also notable is the fact that while the Defence Services Institute of Medicine offers 12 months of study in an academic year, civilian institutes have been restricted to offer a mere 5 months of study in an academic year.

    (2). Defence Services Institute of Technology

    The majority of engineers and technicians in Burma are products of military training, and serve in the armed forces. The Defence Services Institute of Engineering was established in 1994, and awarded its first Bachelor of Engineering degrees in the 1999 academic year. The same year the Institute was moved to Ba Htoo City in Mandalay, and its name was changed by the military to the Defence Services Institute of Technology. This Institute is an elite military school, and upon completion of the 2-year program, the students receive a Bachelor of Engineering. Graduates of the institute are given the rank of commander in the army, and are required to serve in the army for a minimum of 10 years. Military students entering the Institute must have finished 4 years of higher learning; 2 years at an A.G.T.I. (Association of Government Technical Institutions) school, and 2 years at a technical college. There are now 2 colleges that fall under the Defence Services Institute of Technology: the Defence Services College of Technology and the Defence Services for Technical Science.

    (A) Defence Services College of Technology and the Defence Services for Technical Science.

    A.G.T.I students, who have been awarded a certificate upon completing their second year final exams, are eligible to apply the college. Applicants are required to pass an entrance exam, consisting of English and Mathematics proficiency. The students are then checked by the military to ensure that they have sufficient "qualities". If they are approved by the military, they can then enrol in these schools. Following 2 years of study at the schools of technology, a Bachelor of Technology is awarded to those who finish this fourth year level with good marks. Upon completion, military students are easily accepted into the Defence Services Institute of Technology.

    (3). Defence Services Academy

    The Defence Services Academy was founded in 1955, as the first true military school in Burma. It remains the military's most prominent Arts and Science school. This academy has taught hundreds of thousands of military students and is based in Pyin Oo Lwin, Mandalay division. Before 1988, the Defence Services Academy (DSA) restricted enrolment to second year university students from certain universities, and allowed them to directly join the school. Then in 1988, after the regime reasserted their power, and formed the SLORC government, the entrance forms to this academy were changed, and students under the age of 18 who had passed the high school matriculation exam were able to apply. Even though thousands of students have applied to the DSA, the regime favours for enrolment those who are offspring of military families and their relatives. For the 1999-2000 academic year, nearly 4,000 application forms were received by the army, but they selected only a few hundred students. The military regimes has never publicised the number of military students in their educational institutions, however, some students who neglected their applications to the DSA have reported that the regime allows a mere 200 students for the 4 years of training at DSA. The military students who are accepted into the DSA have good health and they and their families are generally uninvolved in Burma's political scenes. In addition, the military students and their families have promised to the army, prior to their acceptance, that they will never involve in politics, or relate to those who do. If the military finds any instance of a student, or a student's family's involvement in politics or activities deemed to be against the regime while the student is attending DSA, the military student is kicked out from the DSA and has to face severe punishment at an interrogation centre of military intelligence. The average number of years of study at the DSA is 4 years, during which time the military students must remain at DSA. However, with permission of the army, students are occasionally permitted by the army sometime military student to visit to their family during summer holidays. DSA teaches courses in the Arts and Sciences, which utilise the teaching methods of lectures and lab practical. Lab tools and materials are sufficiently provided for, something which cannot be said for civilian schools. It is a requirement at DSA for every military student to take a course in Computer Science, and the school is equipped with enough computers to provide each student with a computer to learn on. The military regime also conceived a Computer Department at the academy for students pursuing a Bachelor of Computer Science. With the establishment of this department, the regime expects their students to compete with international hi tech standards, and to upgrade their ability with special teaching. However, the Internet has yet to be allowed or taught at the institution. In fact, the Internet remains banned in the entirety of Burma. There is a strong emphasis on physical strength and fitness at DSA, and the regime has provided well for the sports and exercise equipment, which is used in such classes. These have been instances where the government has made it possible for students at DSA to learn under trainers from abroad. Students at the DSA are continuously encouraged to protest local opposition forces and politicians, and to believe in the militarism around the country. The students are taught that the opposition groups who call for democracy are destructive elements and therefore must be crushed as common enemies of the Burma Armed Forces.

    (4). Defence Services Institute of Nursing

    The military regime declared in 1999 its intent to open the Defence Services Institute of Nursing in the year 2000, and that the purpose of the school will be to train highly qualified nurses to serve in the military and its related society. Hence, in 1999, the Military Defence began accepting applications for the planned institute. The following is the list of qualifications that the applicants are required to have before acceptance:

    (a). Certificate of completion of the high school matriculation exam and exam results. (b). English and Biology proficiency. (c). Recommendation from the local Ward Council. (d). Recommendation from the Township Police station, citing a lack of criminal record. (e). Recommendation from two military gazette officers. (f). A promise not to relate with political parties and never to involve in political activities. (g). A pledge to serve at least 10 years under the military government.

    The military has promised to provide its first year nursing students with a 750 Kyats salary, 800 Kyats for its second year students, 900 Kyats for third year students and 1,000 Kyats for final year students. Upon completion of the program, nursing students will receive a Bachelor of Nursing Science (B. N. Sc), and will be required to serve in the military, or its related circle for a minimum of 10 years. During that time of service, the military has pledged to provide 1450 Kyats salary.

    Bibliography and Contact back to top

    (1) 'Report of the All Burma Federation of Student Unions concerning Education' (1999). (2) The New Light of Myanmar (1998, 1999, 2000) (3) Education report from the Education Committee of the Committee Representing the People's Parliament (CRPP) (1999) (4) Labour Department and UNICEF report on working Children & Women (1995). (5) Basic Education in Myanmar (September 1997) (6) Union of Myanmar, Education for All (EFA) (2000) (7) Annual report by the International Labour Organization (ILO) (1999, 2000) (8) 'Conclusion about the current education situation in Burma by ABFSU'. (1998-99) (9) Oway Journal (1996-97) (10) Oway Journal (1958) ====================================================================== The All Burma Federation of Student Unions (ABFSU) established since 1936. The Foreign Affairs' Committee founded in August 1998 in Thai Burma Border area for working the ABFSU (Burmese known as Bakatha) as a branch. ====================================================================== For more information, Please contact to (66 - 55 -532-851)