New guidelines for safety of schoolkids

New guidelines for safety of schoolkids

Force School bus at the inauguration of busworld India Bengaluru 8th edition of b2b organised by busworld at BIEC in Bengaluru on Wednesday 29th August. (DH Photo by Janardhan B K)

Ahead of the new academic year, the government has released a fresh set of guidelines for schools keeping in mind the safety of children.

A government notification lays down guidelines on the structural and functional aspects of educational institutions. The norms range from specifications of the area in which schools ought to be constructed to what children are to be taught.

Schools will be mandated to introduce gender sensitivity to students from class 1 to 12.

In the wake of the recent incidents of sexual assault and molestation in various private schools, the government has mandated that regular meetings are conducted by the faculty. It involves parents in measures to be taken, besides awareness aspects of child sexual assault.

Special emphasis must be given to help students with hearing disability to communicate through sign language and Braille to help the visually impaired explain their issues.

There are also guidelines for the transport section in schools. Schools have to ensure that speed breakers are installed on their premises and that the speed of vehicles ferrying children does not cross 40 km per hour. Besides, school buses are to carry the board ‘school bus,’ be painted in yellow and have rods across the window for safety.

It has been made mandatory for one female staff from the school to remain in the bus till the last child has been dropped home. Schools are expected to keep a record of all drivers and accompanying staff.

Schools will henceforth be expected to keep a first aid kit, enlist details of medical facility nearby in case of an emergency and display the same in one of the prominent places in the school.

It has been recommended that schools tabulate information of blood groups of students, their allergies and mental health issues if any.

Schools with poor infrastructure will have to immediately take a few measures to rectify them. Schools will mandatorily have a compound wall, classrooms in the right condition and stairs with no damages. No debris or sharp objects should be lying unattended.

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