The recent rise in incidents of child abuse seems to have spurred the Department of Primary and Secondary Education into action. It has now issued a set of guidelines for parents, the police and school authorities on how to protect schoolchildren.
The department formulated the rules in association with the Women and Child Welfare Department. The copy of the guidelines available with Express mandates that all schools register details of their teaching and non-teaching staff with the local police. The schools now have to set up child safety committees, comprising the head of the institution, a teacher, a parent, an expert, and child and security representatives.
The department will implement the guidelines through the block education officers, police and the district women and child welfare units. To monitor the implementation, the Education Department will direct all deputy directors to submit reports every three months.
Teach children not to communicate with or befriend strangers. They shouldn’t become overtly close even with familiar faces
Approach the police if the child gets obscene messages or videos on his/her mobile phone
Try your best to admit kids to a school close to your home
Collect detailed information on the schools and their staff in your jurisdiction
If any case of mental or physical abuse is reported, visit the said school immediately
Give immediate attention to complaints of parents, children and female staff
In case of complaints from children, act without revealing the child’s identity
Don’t let children leave the school compound with anyone but their parents/guardians
Don’t allow girl students to be alone with male staffers
Construct separate toilets for boys and girls; station female attendants near ladies’ toilets
Hire non-teaching staff from reputed outsourcing agencies and provide their details to the police
Before closing the school for the day, ensure no child or staff member is on the school premises
Refrain from giving punishments like shutting children inside dark rooms
No strangers should be allowed inside the school vehicle
On the way back, school drivers shouldn’t drop the child anywhere but at his/her house
Ensure electricity supply in all parts of the school
Teach children about good touch-bad touch