Development of a School-based Intervention Program for Waste Management in a Rural School in Northern Thailand

Waraporn Boonchieng1, Kannikar Intawong1, Jukkrit Wungrath1, Aksara Thongprachum1, Warangkana Naksen1, Saowaluck Settheekul2, *, Surapee Tarnkehard1, Niwat Songsin3
1 Faculty of Public Health, Chiang Mai University, Chiang Mai, Thailand
2 Independent researcher, Chiang Mai, Thailand
3 Department of Public Health, College of Allied Health Sciences, Suan Sunandha Rajabhat University, Bangkok, Thailand

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© 2023 Boonchieng et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Independent researcher, 104 Chang Moi Rd. Mueang Chiang Mai, Thailand, 50300; Tel: +66-52-063065; E-mail:



Waste management is a challenging environmental and public health issue in Thailand and throughout the world.


This study aimed to develop a school-based intervention program for waste management in one rural school in Northern Thailand.


A specific research and development method was employed to develop the school-based intervention program. This consisted of three steps: 1) a problem and need assessment step, wherein 38 key stakeholders associated with the school, including a school administrator, teachers, students, a food vendor, and a janitor, were interviewed to understand the existing waste management problems and intervention components; 2) an intervention development step, involving students, teachers, and researchers who worked together to design an intervention program based on the perspectives of the stakeholders; 3) an intervention implementation and evaluation step, wherein students, teachers, and researchers implemented the developed intervention program in the school and evaluated the appropriateness of the program using an online questionnaire. Qualitative data were analyzed using content analysis, while one-way ANOVA was used to compare waste management knowledge among students at the pre-, right after-, and one-month-after implementation stages.


The school-based waste management intervention program involved four action plans: 1) empowering peer leadership; 2) supporting peer-led activities; 3) setting up enough bins; and 4) promoting extracurricular activities by peer leaders involving teachers and community leaders. Following the implementation of the program, students demonstrated greater waste management knowledge immediately after the intervention (p< .05) and at the one-month follow-up point (p< .01).


This developed school-based intervention program could improve waste management knowledge among adolescents in rural schools.

Keywords: Waste management, School-based intervention, Research and development method, Peer leader, Participation, Thailand.