Bill to ensure safety, security of students at schools tabled in House

Bill to ensure safety, security of students at schools tabled in House

Bill to ensure safety, security of students at schools tabled in House
The state government on Monday tabled an amendment bill in the Legislative Assembly seeking to ensure safety and security of students, including protection from sexual offences, in all educational institutions. Primary and Secondary Education Minister Tanveer Sait, who tabled the Karnataka Education (Second Amendment) Bill, 2017, said the Act has defined sexual offences and included penal clause for its violations on part of the institutions. The bill is drafted based on the child rights policy, he added.

The amendment bill empowers the government to make provisions to ensure safety of the students in all schools, including those affiliated to CBSC and ICSE and tutorials, in the state.
The bill proposed to establish District Education Regulatory Authority under the chairmanship of deputy commissioner of the respective district. The Authority will ensure that rules or guidelines issued by the government are implemented by the institutions.

The responsibility of ensuring safety will be on the institutions. Hefty penalty has been proposed for violations of any of the provisions. An employee or a member of the management will face imprisonment for minimum six months and may have to pay fine up to Rs 10 lakh in case of violation. Besides, the Authority will have powers to withdraw recognition or affiliation to such institutions, the bill stated.

“The bill is proposed in the wake of increasing cases of sexual assault on students in educational institutions. I admit there is delay on part of the government in taking action. Detailed guidelines will be issued for the institutions for ensuring the safety of students,” the minister stated.

Besides, Sait tabled another amendment bill that seeks to bring in certain changes in general transfer of the government school teachers from the coming academic year. As per the Karnataka State Civil Service (Regulation of Transfer of Teachers) (Amendment) Bill, 2017, teachers who have completed 10 years of service in urban areas will be transferred to rural areas.

However, unmarried female teachers, widowed teachers, those having more than 40% disability and office-bearers of recognised teachers’ association have been given exemption. The bill also seeks to streamline the process of transfer and posting of teachers by providing options and flexibility to teachers and to seek postings of their preference. It also seeks to ensure filling of vacancies in rural areas and those under Centrally sponsored scheme on priority. The state Cabinet had recently approved both the bills.