Studying how schools are run: Start with school vans

Focus is now on schools, after the controversial death of N Babysana inside her hostel on July 18. The CBI is yet to respond to the approach of the State Government to take up the case and the JAC Against the Death of Babysana has lined up a series of protests in the next few days to up the pressure to solve the mysterious death of the young school child. Not the case of this paper to say which side of the version carries more weight, the version of the police which point to suicide and the suspicion of the JAC that a young school child of only 14 could not have even entertained the  thought of ending her life. Let the CBI investigate the case and take it to its logical conclusion, but interesting to note that it took the death of a young school girl to jolt the Government awake to the necessity of drawing up the specifics of running a hostel in the State. Let all concerned give their thoughts and inputs as sought by the Government some time back and ideally the focus of everyone, starting from the Government to the parents and guardians and elders of society should also cover the aspect of how schools are being run and managed. The preferred choice of every student, parents and guardians are private schools, for obvious reasons and it is more than right that the Government too frame a policy on how these schools should be managed and run. For starters the Government may seriously study how young school kids are packed into a school van everyday to take them to school and back home. A look at any of the school van on the route to school and back should give an idea of how school kids are packed into the vehicle like the proverbial sardines in a can.
The respective schools too may frame their own policy after consulting the same with the van drivers’ associations. Going to school should ideally be a pleasant journey for the young school kids and packing them inside the school vans like they are some goods just does not cut ice. This is where the Government may step in and cancel the license of any van  operator if the limit put on the number of students that one vehicle may carry is not adhered to. Other than this, the Government and parents and guardians may also join hands to ensure that no schools award corporal punishment to the young students. Times have changed and it no longer stands that young, naughty students need to be caned to bring them back in line. The series of stories that have come out from the hostel of the school where the late young student studied should be an eye opener to everyone, especially the school management. Some sort of a system need to be put in place for all schools to follow. This will ensure that all schools at least follow a minimum standard of procedures for the young students and for this the Government may seek the opinion and suggestions of the parents and guardians just like the same have been sought for running school hostels and boarding houses. As stated earlier, set down the number of students that a school van can carry and this can be the starting point for all schools to follow.