Schools to be held guilty for abuse on campus

Schools to be held guilty for abuse on campus

The State government is all set to hold the management, principal or the headmistress of the school responsible if a child is abused on campus.

This will become part of the proposed policy for protection of children in schools which was scheduled to be approved by the  Cabinet on Saturday. While Law Minister T B Jayachandra said that the policy has been approved, Chief Secretary Kaushik Mukherjee said the Cabinet deferred the discussion as the comments from the Women and Child Welfare Department was yet to be submitted.

The Education Department has given its recommendations on the proposed policy.
While briefing the media, Jayachandra said the policy primarily stipulates that apart from sexual abuse, other kinds of abuse will also be considered as equally serious and will protect children from being exploited.

“This is just a policy, but we need a legal framework and a legislation to protect children. The government will see the response to this policy and then take a final decision on forming an Act for protecting children in schools,” Jayachandra said.

It is learnt that the minister was a tad late to the Cabinet meeting and was unaware that a decision on the policy had been deferred.

The minister, however, briefed the media based on the Cabinet note on the policy. With this, it is not clear when the government will finalise the policy.

Even the State Department of Information and Public Relations released a press note stating that the policy was approved by the Cabinet.

Jayachandra said the policy also speaks of setting up a school and child safety committee, which shall include teachers, children and parents in every school apart from the appointment of a school safety officer, who will be selected by the committee.

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