Criticism of the junta has already been banned in schools and in the blog post BP also mentioned what Prayuth had stated in one of his weekly address:
On cultural issues. We should help to reinforce the values of “Being Thai”, national pride, and upholding the institution of the monarchy. These values should be included in the school curriculum by the Ministry of Education.
On the development of teachers and education system, we should resume courses on history, civil duties, and morals into the current curriculum. The purpose is to instil discipline, strengthen the physical and mental state, and reinforce conscience and social responsibility. We need to encourage our citizens, children, government officials and all sectors to build a systemic way of thinking by not thinking only in the short term basis. One should complete what has been started. Think for the long term with focused and rational thinking. Do not believe in what others say but it must be proven. National interest must come first. The people in society should have a sense of generosity, sharing, not become a society of abusing and defaming each other. We have to compete with many countries. Tourism is the most important because it generates tremendous income for the country so we need to push forward.
The Nation has more on the implementation of this:
The National Council for Peace and Order (NCPO) may not have said it out loud yet. But it is quite clear that educational reform is now embracing the idea of “moral soundness and virtues”.
One of the very first things the NCPO did on the educational front, after all, was revive History and Civic Duty.
Despite cautions from quite a few educators, the NCPO has successfully pushed the Education Ministry to bring back these two subjects for the purpose of inculcating better attitudes and values among the young.
And the ministry has acted very quickly on this initiative. It has said History and Civic Duty will no longer be just part of Social Studies when the second semester of the 2014 academic year begins in November.
At present, it is unclear how History will change from three decades ago, when classes began with the loss of Ayutthaya to the former Burmese kingdom or Siam’s conquest of areas in neighbouring countries. That doesn’t quite match Thailand’s plan to become a hub in the Asean Economic Community (AEC) era. It remains unanswered how Thai educators will consult with their peers in other Asean states on how history is taught there.
For Civic Duty, it also remains unclear if international standards will be applied – or the NCPO’s standards. Internationally, the imposition of martial law is perceived as a move that deprives many of their basic rights. What will our students be told when it comes to the martial law recently imposed in Thailand?
BP: Well, BP doesn’t expect debate on how things like freedom of speech will be the focus point in the curriculum so NCPO’s standards….
Prachatai* has more on education reform junta style:
MCOT reported on Saturday that the Ministry of Education plans to implement junta leader Gen.Prayuth Chan-ocha’s 12 main Thai values into the education reform roadmap for the years 2015-2021.
Suthasri Wongsaman, Permanent-Secretary of the Education Ministry, said that the Ministry had already started revising history and civic duties in order to make students learn about the duty of Thais, discipline, morality and patriotism. The new curriculum will be implemented in the second semester of the 2014 school year.
Gen. Prayuth said during his televised speech on Friday that the 12 main values according to NCPO policy are as follows:
1. Love for the nation, religions and monarchy
2. Honesty, patience and good intention for the public
3. Gratitude to parents, guardians and teachers
4. Perseverance in learning
5. Conservation of Thai culture
6. Morality and sharing with others
7. Correctly understanding democracy with the monarchy as head of the state
8. Discipline and respect for the law and elders
9. Awareness in thinking and doing things, and following the guidance of His Majesty the King
10. Living by the sufficiency economy philosophy guided by His Majesty the King
11. Physical and mental strength against greed
12. Concern about the public and national good more than self-interest.
BP: It seems critical thinking and analysis didn’t make the cut and well it would be contrary to (3). Neither did addressing inequality.
Btw, don’t you love “correctly understanding democracy”? Does respect for law include learning how to stage a coup (which is illegal)?
*Seriously, have a read of recent of Prachatai articles. Some great stuff as always.