Education dept instructs schools to take steps against bullying
Kolkata: Taking a serious note of the incidents of bullying in schools, the state Education department has directed all schools to keep a track of such incidents so that steps can be taken to curb them. The Education department that has recently directed all schools to form a Student Safety and Security Monitoring Committee (SSMC) has urged all schools that the committee should share such incidents of bullying with the department and take remedial measures in this regard.
Principal Secretary of School Education department Dushyant Nariala who attended the School Education Conclave organised by CII on Saturday laid emphasis on countering the issue of bullying in schools in a closed door interaction with headmasters and board members on the sidelines of the conclave. Representatives from 20 government schools and as many as 45 principals/ directors and board members from urban schools across the state attended the event.
Calling names, verbal abuse physical violence, pushing and shoving are common forms of bullying. A 4-member team constituted by the Supreme Court has recently done a study with six urban Indian schools in New Delhi and has found out that bullying in schools indicates a continuum which commences from families to schools and eventually to higher education institutes. The study found that there was a clear bias among school children against girl child, the disabled, religious minorities, lower castes and children from other states and speaking other languages. "We are proud that schools in Bengal have good gender parity while in many other Indian states this is a problem," Nariala said.
Headmaster of Jadavpur Vidyapith Parimal Bhattacharjee said that the school keeps a track of students against whom there are allegations of bullying. "Whenever we find that somebody is indulging in such practice on numerous occasions, we inform his parents and accordingly counsel him," Bhattacharjee said.
The state will spend Rs 70 crore to improve structural safety infrastructure in schools. "Developing sound infrastructure in schools with good hygiene and clean environment and making them free from the scourge of tobacco, drugs and cyber threats dominates the state's agenda," Mr Nariala said adding that his department has formed SSMC to look into safety issues in schools. "There are altogether 25 safety issues which also include healthy food, nutrition, protection from outsiders, safeguard from cyber threats," he said.