Bulgaria to introduce military education classes for grade 9 and 10 pupils
Bulgaria’s caretaker government approved on April 26 an ordinance on military training classes for school pupils in the ninth and 10th grades.
The ordinance is based on Armed Forces Reserve Act amendments adopted in 2020.
A government statement said that the ordinance regulates the training of pupils in grades nine and 10, as well as the preparation of military personnel and civilian employees to conduct training of pupils.
The training is to begin in the next school year, which begins in September 2023.
It will consist of five study hours per year, using class time.
Pupils will be given theoretical training about homeland defence, civil-military relations, the provision of assistance to the population by the armed forces in crises of a military nature, the history, missions and tasks of the military.
Bulgaria’s Defence Ministry has said that the military training will not lead to the pupils being conscripted into the armed forces.
The training will not lead to the acquisition of military qualifications, or special skills for handling weapons, ammunition and explosives, the ministry has said.
The April 26 decision by the caretaker government also covered the procedures for applications by Bulgarian citizens to train as reserve officers at military academies.
The military is seeking to deal with the shortfall of military personnel, which according to the most recent official report on the status of the Bulgarian armed forces is close to 20 per cent.
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