The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has asked all its affiliated schools to get the “psychometric evaluation” of all employees, including teaching and non-teaching staffs, done by professional psychologists within two months.
The school board issued the circular with fresh guidelines for the safety and security of students on Wednesday, days after the murder of an eight-year-old boy by a bus conductor, who slit the throat of the Class 2 student after allegedly trying to sexually abuse him inside the toilet of Ryan International School in Gurgaon.
Psychometric evaluation is designed to measure a person’s suitability for a role based on the required personality characteristics and aptitude.
“Such verification and evaluation for non-teaching staff such as bus drivers, conductors, peon, and other support staff may be done very carefully and in a detailed manner. This may be complied and reported online on CBSE website within two months of receipt of this circular,” the CBSE said in its circular.
There are 19,316 schools in India and 211 schools in 25 foreign countries under the CBSE. There are 1118 Kendriya Vidyalayas, 2734 government/aided schools, 14,860 independent schools, 590 Jawahar Novodaya Vidyalayas and 14 Central Tibetan Schools that follow the board.
The board also asked them to adhere to its existing rules and those issued by the Union human resource development (HRD) ministry in 2014. It has also directed the schools to get a “security and safety audit” of their premises and all employees from their respective local police stations within a period of two months.
“The onus for safety and security of children in school campus shall solely lie upon the school authorities. It is a fundamental right of a child to engage and study in an environment where he/she feels safe and is free from any form of physical or emotional abuse or harassment,” the board added.
“Any violation or lapses with regard to the safety and well being of children in school campus would invite appropriate action including the disaffiliation of the school as per provisions of the affiliation bye-laws,” deputy secretary Jaiprakash Chaturvedi said.
The board has also asked these schools to install CCTV cameras at “all vulnerable areas and points” on their premises and ensure that they are functional “at all times.”
“Installation of CCTV cameras has been made mandatory for all the affiliated schools. This will help keep an eye on any untoward incident,” said a senior CBSE official.
According to the circular, schools must ensure that all “supporting staff” is employed only from authorised agencies and a proper record of such staff is also maintained.
“The access to school building by outsiders should be controlled and visitors (be) monitored. Provide training to staff for protection of children from any form of abuse,” it said.
The CBSE directed the schools to constitute a parent-teacher-student committee to address the safety needs of the students and take “regular feedback” from the parents.
Some of the other guidelines are:
a) The access to school building by outsiders should be controlled and visitors monitored.
b) To provide training and development for staff to address their responsibilities to protect children from any form of abuse.
c) The school shall constitute separate committees for redressal of public/staff/parents/students grievances, Internal Complaints committee on sexual harassment and committees under POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offence) Act, 2012 and details of the these committees along with contact details shall be displayed prominently on School Notice Board and conspicuously on the school website for information of all stakeholders.
d) It is reiterated, that all schools affiliated with CBSE are hereby directed to strictly adhere to all the guidelines issued by MHRD and Board from time to time. Any violation/lapses with regard to safety and well being of children in school campus would invite appropriate action including the disaffiliation of the school as per the provisions under Affiliation Bye-Laws of the Board.