Russian Education Ministry and Defence Ministry support reviving a Soviet-era military training course in schools across the nation, which is expected to be completed by January 1, 2023.
Compulsory military training will be introduced in Russia's school curriculums starting next year, Education Minister Sergey Kravtsov has announced.
The Russian Education Ministry is currently working on the program, which will be included in the existing mandatory course called Fundamentals of Life Safety (FLS), Kravtsov told reporters on Wednesday.
He said teachers will undergo training and the course is expected to be completed by January 1, 2023. It will initially be taught as a pilot program before getting the final approval.
A day earlier, local media reported that Russia’s Defence Ministry supports reviving a basic military training course in schools from the Soviet Union, citing lawmakers and army officers.
During the Soviet-era, the programme was known as the “initial military training” programme and taught high schoolers to handle firearms, respond to a nuclear or chemical attack and provide first aid, according to The Moscow Times.
However, the course was suspended in 1993 and since then, there have been several efforts to reinstate it.
The latest push for the programme is by Sergei Mironov, the leader of the A Just Russia party, who was able to secure Deputy Defence Minister Valery Gerasimov's support.
Gerasimov said his ministry would back legislative proposals to reinstate the programme and that schools should allocate at least 140 hours of training for 10th and 11th graders, local Izvestia daily reports.
“Adding this subject would systematically prepare citizens for a possible confrontation with the enemy,” Mironov told Izvestia daily. He and Gerasimov have also said they believe the courses should be taught by combat veterans.
In addition, Russian schools have added what Moscow calls a special military operation in Ukraine to their history curriculum this academic year as well as weekly patriotic classes called “Important Conversations.”