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The announcement that students with wide ear piercings and visible tattoos will be banned from taking general study courses at public schools in Bangkok has been met with concern from the Human Rights Commission who say that the new rule would stop some students from receiving the chance to study, something they feel is essential for quality of life.
In response the secretary from the Association of Private Technological and Vocational Education Colleges said that providing students with wide ear piercings restored their ears to a normal size they would be eligible to study, however students with visible tattoos would only be allowed to study in the evening classes.
The move came after an agreement among the vocational colleges of Bangkok and the surrounding areas in order to assure graduates were of good appearance to maximize their chances of getting good jobs after graduation.
It has been reported that the secretary of the Association of Private Technological and Vocational Education Colleges said that young people with large ear piercings and tattoos were more likely to engage in antisocial behavior and even violence and that many employers err away from employing them. Japanese companies and official agencies were used as examples of those who do not employ tattooed or pierced job candidates.
It is believed that this student admission standard has been in place for quite some time however it has not been publicized. The Association of Private Technological and Vocational Education Colleges say that most parents approve of the standard. However the National Human Rights Commission has criticized the standard and believes it is a violation of affected student’s rights to receive education. They believe that students have right to education and a right over their bodies, and furthermore that body piercings and tattoos are purely fashion statements and no indication of antisocial behavior and have no affect on the student’s ability to study. Being refused education is more likely to push the affected students down the wrong path, they went on to say.