Chandigarh rights panel asks schools to form child-friendly committees
It has been stated that a child-friendly school committee should be set up to serve as a complaint redressal body. This committee shall consist of the principal, vice-principal along with members, including one male teacher, one female teacher, a school counsellor and two members of the school management committee (SMC).punjab Updated: May 14, 2017 13:39 IST
The Chandigarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CCPCR) has written to the director of school education asking him to set up child-friendly committees in schools to deal with grievances of students.
Besides, the commission has also issued an advisory on counselling in schools and the role of counsellors in schools.
It has been stated that a child-friendly school committee should be set up to serve as a complaint redressal body. This committee shall consist of the principal, vice-principal along with members, including one male teacher, one female teacher, a school counsellor and two members of the school management committee (SMC).
Meanwhile in the advisory, the commission has highlighted that counsellors should interact with all school students from LKG onwards, preferably one weekly group session with each class section on issues including good touch bad touch, cyber crimes, mental well-being, ill effects of drug abuse and life skills training, etc.
The counsellors have been asked to fill a detailed performa based on the interaction with students and submit it to the respective school heads. It has been stated that besides in-house counsellors, the school should have the liberty to approach reputed counsellors/ mental health professionals to be empanelled. The schools should also invite reputed mental health professionals to hold workshops for students and teachers.
As per the advisory, complaint boxes should be placed on all floors, preferably in toilets of the school, so that students can make written complaints without any fear. Any complaint, whether received through the complaint box or otherwise, should be reported to the school complaint committee in writing within 24 hours of its being received. The committee should carry out a preliminary investigation into the complaint and submit its report to the principal in 3-4 days.
The committee will immediately report the issue to the Chandigarh police. In case, the school does not report or abets any offence, it will face action for the offence.
The committee will also monitor the behaviour and decisions of the staff such as corporal punishment, verbal abuse by teachers or staff members, physical abuse, sexual abuse and discrimination by teacher or staff members of students.
On behaviour of children, perceived by teachers as problematic, the school should have a clear protocol to guide teachers which situation needs assessment and intervention by a school counsellor and which one needs immediate intimation to higher authorities at school and parents.
Best school counsellor
On November 14, Children’s Day, the commission will adjudge the best school counsellor of Chandigarh, who would be given a token of appreciation along with a certificate.