A dedicated teacher ~ Mr Keo Bunly

Mr Keo Bunly was born in a neighbouring village to Phum Ou called Koksrok. He’s upbringing was challenging for him and his family, though it taught him very invaluable life lessons. His family’s persistence to overcome the challenges presented by poverty, poor health along with the lack of opportunity for a quality education gave him a valuable perspective to understand just how valuable these things are.

Family Background

Keo is from a large family and has 4 sisters and 1 brother. None of his sisters had the chance to finish primary school due to poverty and ongoing illness. It was only Keo and he brother that were afforded this valuable change to be educated.

His father passed away due to illness whilst Keo was a teenager and the pressure on the family was immense. His mother struggling to feed the children by selling sweets at the market so his two of his sisters went to Phnom Penh to work in the garment factory to support the family.

Keo mentioned is very proud of his family and his mother for her support to help him be educated even with very little money. All of his sisters now have a family of their own, his brother graduated from university and they have both gotten married recently.


He wasn’t able to start school until he was 8 years old and spent many years studying to become a teacher. Studying English and also a teaching degree he graduated in 2013 and begun his teaching career.

Why is education so important?

Education plays a very important role in everyone’s life. It is an essential key for bright future for all of us. It helps us in making better position in the society and achieves dreamed position in the job. Higher study is very necessary for all to get good job in life. In such a competitive world, it is must for all to have good education. We get knowledge, experiences and skills from school or taught by life and use them to work in the society to make our lives better. If you’re not an educated person, you won’t be able to find a good job right now. So, you must be an educated person and skilled in other to get a good job and get high payments. In short, you cannot drop out of school and just drop into a good job. Well Education is the most powerful weapon to solve the problems.

Why is English language education become so important and necessary in Cambodia?

Well, English is the second language for many people in the world, it’s used to communicate with each other. One out of five people can speak or at least understand English! Siem Reap has one of the most famous tourism sites in the world with lots of accent temples such as Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, TaBrom… 

So, there are lots of tourists come to visit here every day. If you’re able to speak English, you will be offered a good job. The most important point is, knowing English increases your chances of getting a good job in this area.English is usually required when you apply for the jobs. It is also needed in business, political, health or even some universities. Most electronic machine such as computer, smart phone… are set in English language. Most of information on internet and some products are written English. We could learn other cultures, other nations and make new friends from around the world by using English.English is the language of the media industry. If you speak English, you won’t need to rely on translations and subtitles anymore to enjoy your favourite books, songs, films and TV shows. In conclusion, Learning English will lead you to be able to discover and speak to the world.

Why do I choose to be a teacher?

Because, Cambodia is a developing country, the thing that the country needs the most is Human Resources. Working as a teacher is to help the government to create the potential Human Resources to develop our country. It’s the best job for me because, I like working with the children especially withSecondary school students. I like sharing and I want to help by educate my young people to be really valuable citizens in the future. Although, it is tough job, I always have fun and happy with it. Even though, it’s not an easy job, it’s the best way for me to help my country.

I’m enjoying teaching at the Phum Ou School, one of the most memorable moment for my time teaching here is when teaching the importance of English for level 3 students. They caught very fast. After learning, they promised to try harder to study English. I was so proud and happy with them.

What I teach:

I teach 3 classes, around 45 students a day. They are amazing and playful, but the most interesting one is the level 3 class, which has 9students. They’re so amazing and brilliant. They rarely miss the class. I would like to introduce you to one students, her name is Un Na Roth. She is 12 years old, studies in grade 5 in the government school and comes to my free class after her other school. She is a hard and dedicated learner, she always comes to school early to clean the class, she always pays attention and tries to focus on the lessons. She hardly ever misses the class. She always pays respect to me and other teachers in every situation. She is number one in level 3 class. It shows us how they treat both schools with the same value, that is the reason that I am so proud and it inspires me to try more and more to help them in every possible way.  

At Phum Ou School and Vocational Training Centre we provide free education to all the children in the community. It helps students to improve their English skills. We work to build bright future for them, especially for the poor students, who has no money to pay for private school for extra English classes, which is normal in Cambodia. More than 200 students around the village come to study English in this school every weekday. Students usually have chance to study and speak English with the volunteer teachers or guests. So, it is very helpful for them to practise. We want all children to have the same opportunity and get education equally. We also donate some school supplies such as books, pens, pencils, rulers… and help build the toilets and homes for poor families. We have a library, which contains lots of books with different capability levels, Khmer and English for students and villagers to read to gain more knowledge. So, Phum Ou School plays the best role to help students in this community.

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