Ratchaborikanukroh School #Fundie khaosodenglish.com

RATCHABURI — A school in the western region became a subject of ridicule on Friday after it prohibited students from bringing roses to school on Valentine’s Day.

Citing the need for girl students to preserve their moral purity, Ratchaborikanukroh School issued an order banning students from bringing flowers or putting stickers on their uniforms on the day of love. The school remains silent as of publication time despite criticism from many netizens.

“Students are not allowed to buy flowers or other goods that are sold in front of the school. If any one violates this rule, they will be sent to the student affairs office,” the order said.

The school also warned students against public displays of affection, adding that there will be patrols outside school.

“Teachers are asked to inform students against inappropriate expressions on Valentine’s Day because girl students must preserve their modesty,” according to the order. “If any one gets caught by patrolling officials, they will face severe disciplinary actions.”

The strict rule drew much attention on social media after student rights group Education for Liberation of Siam posted the document on its social media platforms. The group’s secretariat general Laponpat Wangpaisit described the order as excessive and “missing the point.”

“I see it as an infringement of student rights,” Laponpat said. “The school should teach students how to love rather than suppressing them. I have never been taught about love in school, that’s why many students made wrong decisions.”

Although it is not uncommon for Thai schools to impose Victorian-era virtues on students, such as forcing girls to cover up their knees and keeping hair tidy, Ratchaborikanukroh School’s explicit ban on roses was widely ridiculed online.

“Students or prisoners?,” user @ILILILILILTTT commented. “They should educate students how to have safe sex and respect the rights of others.”

Many also questioned why the school does not point fingers to male students.

“I’m concerned with the notion that girl students must preserve their modesty. Why don’t they teach boys to respect girls too?” user @amilykatze wrote.

But a number of netizens defended the school, saying that it is the right thing to to protect students from engaging in sexual activities.

“Teachers are doing this as they care about students. Society has already changed and Valentine’s Day has become the day of losing virginity,” Facebook user Tusak Surichay commented in a news thread.

Ratchaborikanukroh School is attended by about 3,500 students from Matthayom 1 to Matthayom 6. (Submitter’s note : 13-18 Year olds)

Several government officers #fundie bangkokpost.com

Renowned artist Chalermchai Kositpipat has supported a student under fire for painting Lord Buddha as Ultraman, a famous Japanese superhero protecting the world from evils.

Mr Chalermchai on Sunday said the art pieces painted by the student at Nakhonratchasima Rajabhat University show a courageous creativity that represents the thoughts of the young generation about Lord Buddha.

"What is happening shows a problem in our society. When young generations have creative ideas and use their imagination with a courage that reflects change, they are always criticised so that they do not want to do something new," Manager Online on Sunday quoted him as saying.

"Many kids can paint Lord Buddha as he was perfectly, but how many of them can think out of the box? This student can and she has done nothing wrong," the outspoken artist said. "Ultraman is the best character to represent Lord Buddha as far as her idea is concerned."

Mr Chalermchai is best known for the creation of Wat Rong Khun to show his dedication to the religion. The temple draws worshippers and tourists to his home province of Chiang Rai.

The art student, whose name was withheld, came under attack after two of her four paintings were shown in public at an exhibition at Terminal 21 in Nakhon Ratchasima last Tuesday. The images were later shared on social media.

The organiser later removed them from the show.

On Saturday, the student was accompanied by provincial governor Wichien Chantharanothai and university vice rector Thawat Trachu and officials of the Buddhism Provincial Office and the Culture Provincial Office to call on Nakhon Ratchasima chief monk Phra Thepseemaporn.

She apologised to the monk and public for creating the paintings. But the student said she had no intention to ridicule or look down on Lord Buddha and the religion.

"I just wanted to show that Lord Buddha is a hero like Ultraman, who can stay calm among the temptations surrounding him and also protect human beings from evil to keep the world at peace," the student explained in tears.

Phra Thepseemaporn advised her to think thoroughly about religious issues due to their sensitivity and impact on worshippers.

The governor ordered all educational institutions in the province to check all work by students before presenting it to the public.