Capt Virat Somchit, commander of the Royal Thai Navy’s Naval Rating School for non-commissioned officers in Chonburi’s Sattahip district, said two camps are planned.
Under the so-called Lai Plang (camouflage) model targeting mainly boys, students who graduate from primary school and are moving to Mathayom 1, and those who completed Mathayom 3 and are moving on to Mathayom 4, will be required to attend an army camp lasting between seven to 14 days.
Students who fail to attend the compulsory camps will be barred from studying the territorial defence student programme and must undergo mandatory conscription when they turn 20, Capt Virat said.
The navy came up with the model in response to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s policy to curb brawls between students from rival institutes.
A source at the navy said the premier ordered the navy to devise the measure to help the government solve the long-standing issue.
Earlier, the navy school briefed him on the plan that students involved with inter-school fights should attend a two-week camp which could help ease their sense of hostility toward students of rival schools.
The programme will be held jointly by the navy and the Education Ministry.
Capt Virat said the camp aimed to instil good discipline, responsibility, compassion and virtues in students.
The camps can be held both during school terms or the holidays.
Camp sites and military personnel will be prepared by the army.
“We want parents to think of it as sending their children to a scout camp, only for a little longer and under the military’s supervision,” he said.
Capt Virat said an assessment of camp activities will also be conducted, adding he believed the new model would help tackle the student brawl issue.
The navy has finished drawing up the model which will go to navy chief Na Areenij for consideration, he added.
As for vocational students, they must attend another three-week camp on top of the other two camps.
The extra camp will centre on team-building and ice-breaking activities to forge good behaviour and solidarity among students.
Under the new model, Capt Virat said orderliness, virtues, leadership and patriotism will be stressed.
Also, schools can invite military personnel from army bases to lecture their students about discipline, which will enable the students to grow more acquainted with army authorities.
Earlier, the navy and the Education Ministry conducted a camp on a trial basis for a group of vocational students who took part in inter-school brawls.
During their 14 days at the camp, students were closely monitored by military trainers who noticed they barely talked to each other during the first week.
However, they drew closer during the second week after participating in various activities together.
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