Schools can appoint their own women attendants for school buses, the School Bus Owners’ Association has said.
Anil Garg, president of the association, said bus contractors would pay the salaries of the attendants.
According to the government’s school bus safety policy, the contractors have to employ and pay the salaries of the bus staff.
Around 9,500 school buses that daily play school children come under the ambit of the association.
This comes after a four-year-old nursery student from a school in Juhu was molested last week by the bus cleaner.
“We want parents to have confidence. So schools can appoint the people they trust, if they prefer,” said Garg
The Juhu school had earlier pointed to the possibility of appointing more women attendants.
At a meeting at the school on Monday, some parents had volunteered to do bus duty. However, this may not be feasible in the long run.
“It will not be uniformly sustainable across,” said Indrani Malkani, a member of the committee that drafted the school bus safety policy. “Not everyone can do it, but if some schools want to put another woman attendant, that is their choice.”
Earlier this week, members of the association approached school principals and asked them to ensure a woman staff member was present on the bus in case the attendant doesn’t show up, or to take the children back to school and ask parents to pick them up.
Meanwhile, school principals, transport authorities, bus contractors and education department officials will meet on Thursday to discuss the bus safety policy and its implementation. The meeting will take place at the Andheri regional transport office.