Phi'lasasam was an aspect within Romulan culture and was known as the Education.
Unlike the children within worlds of the United Federation of Planets, the offspring of Romulans were trained for duty, honor and service to the Romulan Star Empire from birth. At the age of five, assuming that the child in question passed the inspection, they would then be placed in the "phi'lasasam" which was a combination of primary, secondary school, college and Starfleet Academy. Whilst between the ages of five and twenty, Romulan children attended such training centers in every local town or large neighborhood. There, he adopts his classmates and teacher as his "family" without ever severing the ties of those of his natural family.
Due to centuries of selection and weeding out of the week, Romulan children were known to develop much quicker than their Human counterparts. They were also known to naturally absorb the information from their teachings much more readily when compared to Humans. In fact, their elders were known to push them even harder to succeed at an early age whilst Human children were, comparatively, hardly pushed at all. As such, Romulan young had a much more of their time learning, training and exercising which meant they gained skills at an early age. By the age of ten, a Romulan was as mentally mature as a fifteen year old Human.
The push towards maturity and excellence, however, had an impact on the social skills of young Romulans. Unlike Humans who take such skills for granted, Romulans tended to favor solitude whenever possible. To counter this development, social skills were introduced during the teenage years in order to make up for this deficiency. Thus, whilst they were present, they were not instinctive to most Romulans.
There were three stages in the "Education" each of which occurred over a five year period and included:
- Phi'navtasam : also known as "The Beginning" and consisted of the first five years of the education process. It was during this time that the children learned of the basics of Romulan life, general history and learned basic physical fitness as well as athletics. Young Romulans primarily received training in the skills that were necessary to survive within civilization with such a process being quite demanding which necessitated the youths to be disciplined and showed aptitude. Any that fall behind mostly never caught up and were forever denied the skills necessary to improving their rank and favor.
- Phi'deltasam : known as "The Broadening" which occurred in the next five years of the child's education. It was during this point that they learned the important points of their chosen field. Earlier aptitude tests were used to guide the child into a general field of study with four major careers presented that included starship operation, starship function, sciences and military operations. Each of these major specialties were further divided into two or more branches and during the phi'deltasam, every specialty and branch was selected.
- Phi'bresalsam : the final stage of the education process which was also known as "The Coming Together of Knowledge". It combined elements of both other stages of the child's study where they learn more about what made them a better Romulan but also expanded their knowledge in their specialty. Similar to the previous stages of development, a Romulan child continued their rigorous and semi-military type training which saw the individual being directed to their goal in a similar way a Terran college student was directed to achieving a specific major and degree. (FASA RPG module: The Romulan Way: Game Operations Manual)