Taking a strict note of as many as 42 students’ suicides in Kota, Rajasthan, in the past three years, a team of the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), Delhi, on Friday visited four coaching centres in the city and interacted with students, institute owners and other stakeholders to ascertain ways to reduce exam-related stress among students.
The institutes inspected include Allen Institute, Bansal Institute, Khera Institute and Akash Institute.
Expressing displeasure at the lack of counsellors at most of the coaching institutes in the city, the team said even if the institutes have counsellors, they are not adequately trained to handle the students’ stress. The panel will submit its findings and recommendations on ways to reduce exam-related stress among students to the Central government.
While addressing mediapersons, NCPCR member Priyank Kanoongo said, “It has been found that these coaching centres are treating students as their customers. In a class of 150, how are they dealing with every student individually?”
The inspection was conducted in order to understand the process of enrollment, class strength, counselling support being provided to the students and how the students are managing with the stress of preparing for competitive exams. The team also visited some of the paying guest accommodation to students provided by these institutes. Instructions and suggestions were given to all stakeholders to ensure the safety of the children.
“We also observed that these coaching centres divide students into different sections - like A+, A star, A and others - after a couple of classes, creating a sense of inferiority complex among others not selected in the top sections,” Kanoongo added.
NCPCR member Priyank Kanoongo and other staff Shaista Shah, Geetanjali and Rajnikant were part of the team that visited from Delhi. Chandigarh Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (CCPCR) chairperson Prof Devi Sirohi and members Prof Nishtha Jaswal and Pramod Sharma, Haryana State Commission for Protection of Child Rights member Paramjit Singh Badola and Punjab State Commission for Protection of Child Rights member Dr Khanna participated in the inspection.
The inspection was followed by a meeting.