Gurgaon: Schools say new CBSE safety norms will inflate expenses
The CBSE put out an advisory on Thursday asking all Gurgaon schools affiliated to it to enforce new security norms to ensure safety of children riding on school busesgurgaon Updated: Feb 27, 2017 22:21 IST
The city schools have expressed displeasure over new security norms for school buses issued by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) on Thursday.
The board issued a circular saying that all schools affiliated to it have to make provision for mobile phones inside school buses, as these would enable children to call up their parents in the event of an emergency. They have also been directed to depute a security guard on each bus and have them oversee the boarding and de-boarding of students on campus.
The board made it clear that the management and the school head would be liable in the event of any lapse or non-compliance with the guidelines. It said that a school could even be de-recognised for such violations.
Speaking to HT, heads of some top schools in the city said they fully adhere to the guidelines laid down under the Surakshit School Vahan Policy and most of the regulations that the board has asked to be followed are already in force.
“Some of the security features suggested by the board like CCTV cameras, sirens, windows with grills and female attendants on buses are already in place. However, deputing security guards on buses will further inflate the expenses borne by the schools and, by extension, the parents. We spend a lot of money to ensure proper maintenance of these AC buses and we would have to incur more expenses to ensure compliance with the board’s guidelines,” Vaibhav Kapoor, principal, Ajanta Public School, Sector 30, said.
The CBSE has split the guidelines under seven broad categories. These include exterior and interior of the bus, manpower, facilities on the bus, permits, arrangements by school authorities and advisory to parents.
“Female attendants deployed in school buses have mobile phones to be used in the event of an emergency. What is the point of installing separate mobile devices in buses? The students and their parents are even encouraged to write to us and post their feedback,” Aparna Erry, principal, DAV public school, Sector 14, said.
The board also advised schools to display such details as the drivers’ phone numbers, addresses, licence numbers, badge numbers, contact numbers of the schools and bus owners and the helpline number of the transport department prominently in bold colours on these vehicles.
Peeya Sharma, principal, Ryan International School, Sector 40, said, “Adding to our service costs would only add to expenses incurred by the parents. The add-ons suggested by board are a burden, as we already have all the safety and security measures in place.”
The schools have also been told to have horizontal grills and mesh wire on bus windows and doors fitted with reliable locks. GPS and CCTV cameras have also been made mandatory in each school bus.
The schools have also been told to have the buses parked on campuses both while picking up or dropping off students.
The CBSE advisory comes in the light of several incidents which served to highlight the alleged shoddy approach by some schools with regard to ensuring the safety of their students.