Thailand’s Education Minister has ordered an investigation into the death of a 14-year-old girl who hung herself after being allegedly expelled for missing her first day of school and failing to pay student fees.
Popular Facebook page Yak Dang Chat Hai Return Part 3 published the teenager’s story, sparking a public outcry.
“No parents, no money. Stop thinking about returning to school to meet friends. That would be heartbreaking. Normally, we talk with each other and consult. “We have been helping each other all along,” the student said in a Facebook post.
One parent commented that she could not understand why the teacher did not help the student who was in distress. She expressed her sadness as a girl having to deal with such an experience at home and with a teacher. “Where are the ethics of the teacher?” she asked.
Student loan application refused
The girl’s parents have also been accused of negligence, both of whom have reportedly refused to pay her school fees. According to a leaked chat, the mother told her daughter to drop out of school because her loan application had not been approved.
According to her friend, the last straw was a student counselor’s advice to move from Satri Phatthalung School in Phatthalung province to a school in Songkhla province due to the family’s financial difficulties.
An eighth-grader at the same school, who is junior to the victim, said the girl was extremely depressed after learning that she was expelled. Since she was a young child, she said she had lived with her relatives in Songkhla province after coming from a broken home.
Before hanging herself at her home around midnight last Friday, she texted several of her friends. Her death was meant to send a message to her family and to the school that everything needed to change.
The school and the ministry’s Office of the Basic Education Commission (OBEC) launched a fact-finding probe. It was scheduled to take seven days.
14-year-old student under extreme pressure
On Tuesday, Education Minister Trinuch Thienthong said the initial investigation suggested the girl and her student counselor miscommunicated.
According to Ms. Trinuch, the girl was under extreme pressure because her family struggled financially. Instead of continuing her studies at Phatthalung.
As a result of her suicide, the education minister noted the importance of effective school counseling. In line with the ministry’s policy to guarantee school safety, the current program must be improved to meet students’ needs better.
According to Trinuch, school counselors need to understand the issues students face, including their family situation and financial situation, and provide classroom lessons and annual academic counseling.
Furthermore, schools should provide adequate financial assistance to ensure education is accessible to all. According to Ms. Trinuch, a school counseling program is crucial to maintaining the children’s mental health.
In addition to providing mental health support, school counselors should also help students plan for the future.
She also said that school teachers must be prepared to support students to the best of their abilities.