A Thai public school faces online criticism for making kindergarten students wear four different uniforms in one week, including what appeared to be a military uniform.
Parkphoom Dejhatsadin, a medical technologist who also runs a popular Facebook page posted the announcement of a Bangkok public school to parents informing them of the required uniforms ahead of the new school term.
The post received more than 16,000 shares in less than five hours.
The four uniforms for kindergarten students at the school include a normal uniform for Monday and Tuesday, a physical education uniform for Wednesday, a soldier uniform for Thursday and an ASEAN uniform for Friday.
Many netizens said the uniform requirement is adding a financial burden for parents amid rising inflation costs which recently reached the highest in 13 years in March.
Some pointed out that the requirement goes against the Ministry of Education’s policy announced last week to help lower costs for parents by lowering the costs for school uniforms and stationery at state-run outlets.
Many netizens have criticized the school as well, demanding answers for why the school is forcing kindergarten students to wear a soldier-like uniform to go to school every week.
“What is the point of the soldier uniform? one netizen asked
“Are we living in North Korea?” another one added.
Some also shared their own stories as well. Some criticized the requirement for Thai traditional uniforms, the all-white uniform for Buddhist holy days at their schools.
“There is also an all-white uniform at my kid’s school,” one parent wrote in a comment while many others have provided the same example.
The debate on school uniform requirements has heated up over the last few years. Thailand’s student-led pro-democracy movement heavily criticized uniforms as a symbol of authoritarianism.
The group ‘Bad Student,’ has been particularly vocal, arguing that forcing students to wear a uniform does not make students better or safer, but instead creates a power dynamic that should not reflect modern Thailand