The case of the 6 year old raped in a prestigious school in Bangalore, left me shaken. Very badly. I have a 6 year old at home, and I cant imagine anyone doing anything to her. It just gives me goosebumps, the very thought.
I can imagine what the parents of the child will be undergoing.
Surprisingly, there are news reports that the school doesn’t claim any responsibility for safety. How on earth can a school say that? I send my child to school for 6 to 7 hours. School is called our second home. That’s what we learnt when we were kids. I remember writing essays on school, when I was a kid, saying the school is our second home and teachers are like our parents.
I have always been taught to bow down to my teachers, that they are the final authority in everything they teach us.
And then this?
I am so shattered as I read it, that I feel numb. How can a school say its not responsible for the safety of the child. I can understand the school saying its not responsible for the property/things which the child brings to school – you know – pencil, eraser, scale, and in some higher classes, perhaps mobile phones or something. (Which actually shouldn’t even be allowed in school, but that’s a different post in itself)
But, not responsible for safety?? What sort of a logic is that?
Again, I can understand if the school says that once the child leaves the school premises or the school bus, they are not responsible for the safety. You know, once you get down the school bus, its your parents who are responsible for your safety. But inside the school isn’t it the school’s responsibility. If they are not responsible, who is?
Whom will you trust your 5 years and 6 year olds? Who will take care of them? Who will be careful about them, when they go for picnics or field trips or just stay inside the school and attend gym period?
I don’t know if there is any logic in the school not claiming responsibility at all?
I honestly tried thinking about this safety thing from a school administrator’s point of view. But I still cant think of a single argument on why schools can say they are NOT responsible for a child’s safety!
For parents, on what basis do you send your child to school? Whom do you believe? How do you know that your child is safe?
For a mother who is not in touch with her child for nearly 10-12 hours a day, I am shuddering this moment, wondering how safe is my child? Whom shall I trust? Its really sad that at this moment, I trust no one. The nice bus conductor who puts her on the bus whenever she falters, or the driver of the bus who waits for her to climb before starting the bus. The Sanskrit sir of hers who gave a wonderful speech on the birth of language, or her gym sir who taught her how to do ‘gulantis’ in an easy way? Can I trust her class teacher to keep an eye on her and figure out where she is all the time, or can I trust the computer teacher to ensure that every child is back to the class after coming from the computer class? Can I believe the aunty who makes her sit in the bus or can I believe the aunty who sits near the toilets to ensure that the kids don’t fumble and fall?
I don’t know whom to trust and who not to!
If schools don’t accept responsibility for the safety of the child, who will? Can we really send our children to school at all?