The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport has been asked to expand the academic programme on Road Safety to grades 10 through 12.
The request came from the Asia Injury Prevention Foundation (AIP), a nonprofit focused on reducing traffic casualties in low- and middle-income countries. The organisation is requesting that the government continue to sponsor traffic safety classes beyond just grades one through nine.
AIP country director Kim Pagna told The Post that it is important that the ministry and related institutions create additional programmes around the country.
“If we educate children about road safety and obeying road rules while they are growing up, we will see results when they reach driving age. They will understand the law and road safety and that will lead to a decrease in road accidents,” Pagna said.
He said the request for additional academic programmes is not only requested by the civil organisation but also government institutions. He said the ministry has raised the issue as well.
“However, I would like the ministry to consider that Cambodia currently faces challenges with road accidents.
“So, the ministry can determine how many years to focus on traffic safety and how many hours. Education in the first year is 18 hours. We can increase that to 24 hours to let students at all levels understand the topic better,” he said.
Pagna said the government has enough resources to grow this programme and when the government requests donations to build roads, it can attach a budget for road safety as well.
“If the Government does not have any projects related to this task, we can find partners and supporters to increase this educational programme,” he said.
Ministry spokesman Ros Soveacha said it has cooperated with the Ministry of Interior and Handicap International Organisation to arrange the academic programme since 2004. The ministry has printed the book Road Safety Education since 2006.
The National Road Safety Committee on Monday issued a press release stating that road accident cases decreased in May year-on-year by 130 cases (37 per cent). Fatalities decreased by 42 people (27 per cent) and injuries dropped by 16 (32 per cent).