The recent news of crimes against children in schools have sent chills down the spines of numerous parents and they have said that school authorities should be charged for crimes on the premises.

A 7-year-old was murdered at Ryan International in Gurugram on Friday. A 5-year-old student was allegedly raped in the premises of Tagore Public School in Shahdara’s Gandhinagar area by one of the messengers on Saturday.

Many more scary incidents involving children are being reported from different parts of the country.

Many parents in various circles on citizen engagement platform LocalCircles have said that they are concerned about the safety and security situation in their children’s schools and that there is virtually no security check for the support staff.

A set of polls conducted by LocalCircles revealed that 88 per cent citizens feel that for crimes against children in school premises, school management and promoters should be charged for criminal negligence.

Out of the 8,208 citizens who responded, only 7 per cent said it should not happen and 5 per cent chose not to share their opinion.

People pointed out that in many schools, the school support staff like cleaners, drivers, conductors and messengers don’t have separate toilets.

When asked if it should be mandatory for schools to have children’s toilets separate from staff toilets, 89 per cent responded in positive while 9 per cent responded in negative. Only 2 per cent were unsure about it.

People suggested that schools should have strong CCTV surveillance, emergency buzzers in toilets and where possible, attendants should be placed outside washrooms.

People said that the schools should immediately respond to any complaint by children or parents against any staff member. They said that the school buses should have female helpers too.

According to citizens, apart from school authorities, district administration via the district education officer, should ensure compliances like no liquor or gutkha shop is operating in at least 100 yards radius and no weapons are carried to school.

Citizens have also suggested that no staff, permanent or temporary, be hired without police verification.

They said that the parents’ body of every school must become more active and raise red flags with local administration if a school fails to comply within a defined time frame.

First Published | 12 September 2017 7:41 PM
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