The people of Burma are facing unemployment problems and financial difficulties in
their country dub to the military government’s incompetent management and corruption
within governmental institutions. Moreover, as a result of the political instability within
the country, unemployed people migrate illegally to neighboring countries. It has been over
53 years since the civil war broke out. With that civil war, the migrating families arrive as
refugees to the comps along the Thai-Burma border.
The economic crisis (including unemployment), imposition of forced labor and
portering by the regional authorities, and the firing of the military government’s soldiers,
forces people to desert their homes and villages and migrate to Thailand illegally. Their
illegal status remains whilst they work individually, or with families, along the border or in
Thailand. There are about three million refugees on the Thai border, and according to the
statistics of 2001, 48% of them are under 18. In fact, 36,768 of these refugees are under 12
According to the Burmese workers’ registration, five and a half million Burmese
people are living and working illegally in Thailand. To give the gift of education to the
children of these migrant workers is to invest in the future of our country. Moreover, it
helps the communities of these children to be more peaceful and secure.
Yaung Chi Oo School is among the workers barracks in the border town of Mae Sot.
In addition, there are two wool garment factories, a stone grinding factory, a knitting
factory and paper works factory nearby. This school was opened for the benefit of the
children of ten thousand workers from these factories and barracks. Over one hundred
students enrol every year.
The school, cooperating with migrant workers, was founded in 1999 and began with
23 students. In 2000, Yaung Chi Oo Primary School was opened (starting with 60
students) with the sponsorship of the Burma Labor Solidarity Organization (BLSO).
Many Burmese citizens are migrating and working in Thailand illegally, due to
economic crises, which is a direct consequence of political instability in Burma. Like their
parents, the children are brought up insecurely and starving in Thailand. As the drug and
child smuggling business is getting bigger and bigger, the children’s lives are getting worse
and worse. The children, growing up in such a situation, are used and abused as drug
smugglers, prostitutes, soldiers, beggars, and in other illegal business such as trafficking.
Yaung Chi Oo school helps to protect the children from facing such situations and gives
them an education. Up to now, the school, cooperating with Social Action for Women
(SAW), has saved 23 children who were orphaned, discarded or sold. Child smuggling
gangs and brokers (carriers), collect and buy the children from migrant workers living
inside and around Burma, and send them to Thailand, including Bangkok. The gangs favor
these children for slave labor and prostitution.
Burma is included in the list of countries that produce the most opium. Children are
used in drug smuggling not only as carriers, but also as sellers.
According to a survey on 300 children in border areas:
· Only 37.6% had a birth certificate.
· 18% were sold.
· 8.6% were involved in drug smuggling.
Yes Percentage No Percentage
Birth Certificate 82 37.6% 218 62.4%
Sold 46 18.0% 254 82.0%
Relation with Drug 26 8.6% 274 91.4%
Goals for opening the school
For children along the border:
· To develop their own language and learn about their culture.
· To receive an education and acquire knowledge that can be used in future
· To promote their own health knowledge and other dieseas
· To promote and maintain physical, mental and social wellbeing, including the
building of a strong character.
· To learn about human rights principles, and participate in social welfare.
· To be protected from drug addiction, sexual abuse and smuggling.
address of the
Life Pages (Yaung Chi Oo) School
Ban.Htong Htawn (nearhinese School) Mae Sot, Tak,Thailand.
Classes Elementary-6th Standard
School days Monday to Friday
Average age of
5 yrs- 18 yrs
Students 1999-00 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 2004-05
Male M 10 M 27 M 36 M 54 M 69 M 91
Female F 13 F 34 F 40 F 58 F 82 F 95
61 To- 76 To- 112 To- 151 To- 186
Teachers List 2004-2005
No. Staff Name Age Education Duty
1. U Myint Aung 30 B.Sc (Physics) Principal
2. U Min Min 29 B.Sc(Mathematics) Joint Principal
3. Daw San 32 B.A(History) Teacher
4. Daw Nge Lay 21 University Entrance Teacher
5. Daw Thuzar 20 University Entrance Teacher
6. Daw Yi Yi Win 23 University Entrance Teacher
7. Daw Cho Cho Khaing 22 University Entrance Teacher
8. Daw Naw Bue May Paw 20 University Entrance Teacher
9. U Win Cho 36 Final year for Maths Teacher
Subjects taught in Yaung Chi Oo School
4. General science
5. Geography and social science
6. Sewing and weaving
7. Art and music
8. Thai language
9. Burmese culture
School Management Committee
The School Management Committee was formed by electing parents,
teachers and advisers on March 9th, 2003. The Committee holds meetings every 2
months, in order to discuss work programs. The committee intends to improve the
quality of the school by taking responsibility for the needs of the school and dealing
with problems that may arise. The committee is for a one-year term, and reforms
Advisory board for School Management Committee
1. Daw Aye Aye Mar-Social Action for Women (SAW)
2. U Zaw Htun-Assistance Association of Political Prisoners (AAPP)
3. U Theik Htun Oo-Burma Labor Solidarity Organization(BLSO)
4. Daw Nyo Nyo Myint-(Committee for Promotion and Protection of Child Rights
5. Dennis Daws (aka) Mun Aung
School Management Committee for (2004-2005) Academic Year
1. U Nyawt -Chair
2. U Khin Maung San -Vice chair
3. U Myint Aung -Secretary
4. U Min Min -Member
5. Daw Cho Cho Khaing -Member
6. Daw San -Member
7. Daw Yi Yi Win – Member
8. U Thant Zin -Member
9. Daw Nge Lay – Member
Special School Activities for Children and Burmese Workers
Yaung Chi Oo School provides Burmese migrant children an education.
Moreover, due to its goal, the school, led by the School Management Committee,
tests children’s health (including dental health), gives protective medicine, holds
lectures, traditional ceremonies, sports, games and dances.
In addition, TBA training, work shops for protecting drug addiction, lectures
on Health Education and ceremonies for World AIDS day, religious ceremonies and
healthcare activities are held for Burmese workers in the school. As development
of a country depends on literature, and expansion of school libraries, the school will
form a reading team for the workers near the school.
Future Work Programs of the School
1. To extend the school building
2. To teach living education for the student
3. To promote teaching methods, learning techniques and the acquisition of
4. To ensure the children receive adequate nourishment
5. To subsidize school uniforms
6. To improve transportation conditions for the students
7. To supply sports equipment
8. To provide learning tools for art and music classes
9. To promote the learning of the Thai language
10. To open a pre-school
11. To teach computer skills