Shutdown, floods, disease - tutorial schools won't close
January 15, 2014 00:00 By Chanon Wongsatayanont
A number of tutorial schools in the heart of Bangkok are determined not to suspend their business in the face of the "Bangkok shutdown", which kicked off on Monday.
They believe their tutorial classes for students can go on uninterrupted either via the Internet or through their unaffected branches.
Most tutorial schools have no plans to close, even if the Bangkok shutdown drags on.
“We have the SELF At Home programme, in which students can access and download recordings of lessons at home,” said Apitha Wonlopsiri, chief communications officer of the Enconcept Academy.
He said this programme worked well for students when they got stuck at home.
“We used it before during the H1N1 epidemic and the 2011 floods,” he said. Enconcept has many branches. Some are located very close to areas to be occupied by the PDRC demonstrators, such as Siam Square and the Wannasorn Building in Phya Thai.
Kulnapa Boonrak, 17, a student at Enconcept Academy, is grateful for the SELF At Home programme because she was worried about coming to the Wannasorn Building during the Bangkok shutdown.
“Now, I have the option of studying at home and don’t have to miss class,” she said.
For more personalised teaching, like preparation for the SAT or IELTS tests, the World Study Centre (WSC) ensures students can learn from home by linking them directly to the teachers. Akkaradej Thannikorn, managing director of WSC, said it would be just like a classroom where they can ask questions of the teacher over the Internet, ensuring they can continue to prepare for their imminent tests.
Some tutorial schools that do not offer online teaching – like On Demand – have informed students they can study at other branches unaffected by the Bangkok shutdown because they often teach from recorded videos.
This is what Nichayada Hirunwattana, 17, a student at On Demand, plans to do. She said that she would continue to study at the Wannasorn Building in Phya Thai area even if there is protest. Public transport, such as the BTS, continues to operate as normal.
However, she said if the situation turned worrying, she might consider sitting her class at another branch instead.
Meanwhile, some tutorial schools, like the Neo Physics Centre or Siam Kolkorn Music School, promise to offer compensatory lessons to students who simply cannot come to study during the shutdown.