A 'Control Room' and 'Student Safety Advisory Committees' will be set up in Tamil Nadu schools to address the sexual abuse and violence complaints from students, parents, and others. The room will have a toll-free number, and a private email facility will also be available for the students.
The government has taken the initiative to monitor students' safety and well-being, given the surge in harassment cases reported from the school premises even during online classes, Hindustan Times reported.
The initiative is a part of the policy note tabled by state Education Minister Anbil Mahesh Poyyamozhi in the ongoing assembly session.
Rise In Sexual Harassment Cases In The State
According to the report, several teachers from well-known schools have been accused of sexually abusing children during online classrooms and sports fields. Many alumni and current students came forward sharing the horrific incidents.
Besides these measures, the school authorities will also conduct an orientation to raise awareness about the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and other related laws.
Poyyamozhi also directed the institutions to observe a Child Abuse Prevention Week annually, from November 15-22.
The control room will be set up at the Directorate of Public Instructions (DPI) campus in Chennai. The DPI will have a 24×7 toll-free helpline with a 5-seat capacity to provide students information and counselling. The helpline number has received nearly 3.5 lakh calls as of now.
Safety boxes will also be installed on the premises where children can lodge their grievances and feedback.
Other proposals in the minister's list included opening up primary schools, upgrading remote areas, infrastructural facilities, etc.