Safety Audit of Schools – Rajya Sabha question
The State Governments and affiliating boards for schools have the responsibility to ensure that schools provide a safe and child friendly environment.
This Ministry had written on 27th July, 2004 to all States and Union Territories (UTs) directing that school buildings should be free from inflammable and toxic materials and there should be provision for adequate emergency exits and adequate supply of water and sand for fire fighting purposes.
Further, this Ministry’s guidelines issued on 9th October, 2014 state that school buildings should be resistant to earthquakes, fire, safe from floods and other calamities.
The Schedule to the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009 provides for norms and standard for a school, which inter alia stipulate for all-weather school building. Under Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan scheme, School Management Committees (SMCs) can avail of training on all aspects of safety and security of children in schools.
The guidelines on Food Safety and Hygiene for School Level Kitchen under the Mid Day Meal scheme stress on the safety aspects of procurement, storage and preparation of food items.
The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) has formulated and circulated detailed guidelines to its affiliated schools for safety of students in schools and prevention of accidents relating to school children.
Rule 8.5 of the Affiliation Bye laws prescribes that “the School should scrupulously observe prescription from the Municipal Authority/District Collectorate/Transport Department regarding drinking water, fire safety and transport precautions in the school.
A certificate from the Municipal/Fire/Transport Authority regarding sanitary conditions, water/fire/transport safety should be submitted along with the application. A fresh certificate regarding fulfilment of these requirements should be obtained and submitted to the Board every five years.
This information was given by the Minister of State (HRD), Shri Upendra Kushwaha today in a written reply to a Rajya Sabha question.